4 Crisis Communications Lessons as the NFL Management Struggles with the Ray Rice Smoldering Crisis

Rayrice blog gerard braud

By Gerard Braud The NFL has a crisis. Do they have a plan? Will the crisis get worse because of non-verbal communications? Can the NFL management communicate their way out of the crisis? Below are some observations and suggestions to help you cope with your own corporate crisis. The non-verbal message from the NFL is […]

Secrets to Effective Key Messages for Media Training

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By Gerard Braud Do your key messages suck? Most people think not. I think they usually do. Expert Media Training requires solid key messages. But public relations people have been taught that a key message is little more than giving your spokesperson or CEO a handful of bullet points, then turning them loose to do […]

Key Messages That Convey What’s In It For Your Audience: Apple iPhone 6

By Gerard Braud As I watch the Apple iPhone 6 roll out, I’m hearing lots of technical stuff. That’s great if you are a techno geek who cares about screen size, pixels and data points. But what does the new iPhone 6 do to make my life better? As a consumer where is the “What’s […]

Crisis Communications Statements That Say Nothing

GW Today

By Gerard Braud Leaders are slow to communicate in a crisis, so I get excited when I see an executive initiate some type of crisis communications. However, the example I’m going to show you here, in my expert opinion, does little to effectively communicate. Also, with two potential crises, this executive opts to focus on […]

3 Ways to Refocus for Fall and Beyond: Better Public Relations After Summer’s Distractions

stressedworker

By Gerard Braud Is “work – life” balance possible for people in public relations? Experience tells me many public relations professionals get stressed trying to complete job tasks while also balancing their family or personal life, especially this time of year. Look at your life today, for example. The kids are back in school. The […]

Crisis Communication & Leadership: Lessons on Ninth Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans

Gerard Braud Hurricane Katrina Crisis

Today marks the 9th anniversary of the crisis known as Hurricane Katrina. My contention is that the failure to plan for crisis communications lead to nearly 2,000 deaths in the city of my birth, New Orleans. I’ve given many speeches on the topic, focusing on what happens when leadership is lacking in a crisis.  (see […]

Crisis Communications: 3 Steps to Take to Manage Social Media Trolls

Troll Blog

By Gerard Braud Would you let social media trolls take over your social media sites? In your crisis communications plan what pre-determines how you will deal with social media trolls? Social media trolls are usually mean-spirited people who hide behind an anonymous persona and live for the joy of making other people miserable by posting […]

Crisis Communications: When Social Media is Mandatory, When it is Optional, and When it is Useless in a Crisis

One-Size-Tag

By Gerard Braud Many thanks to Shel Holtz for his crisis communications podcast that explores whether there is ever a right time to take your social media sites dark during a crisis. You can listen to the entire podcast here. Some folks are appalled at the suggestion of taking a social media site dark and they […]

12 PR Questions to Ask About Ferguson

Michael Brown Crime Scene

By Gerard Braud Crisis communications, public relations, media relations and community relations are a background story worth analyzing as the events of Ferguson, Missouri continue to unfold. From a crisis communications and public relations standpoint, here are 12 questions you should ponder. 1) Did the rules of public relations and crisis communications once again lose […]

Social Media Is Not Always the Right Fit for Reaching Your Audience in Every Crisis

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By Gerard Braud When I mentioned on a blog and BraudCast video recently that sometimes in a crisis, taking your brand Facebook page dark may be the best option, I expected a lot of pushback or differing points of view. Crisis colleague Melissa Agnes posted the observations below and I want to share them with […]

Black Twitter, the Shooting of Michael Brown, and Crisis Communications In the Age of Social Media

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By Gerard Braud The events in Ferguson, MO warrant the need for community leaders to activate their crisis communications plan, if they have one. But the power of Black Twitter, amid the protests, presents an amazing crisis communications and public relations case study. Generally, protesters win the public relations battle against any establishment during a […]

Social Media Complicates Ebola Crisis Communications

Ebola Facebook Crisis video Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud [ If you’ve come to read this crisis communications post via a link by Agnes, please read my full response and rebuttal to her via this blog update. ] A glance at the Emory Healthcare Facebook page magnifies the complexities of crisis communications in the age of social media. I’m not a huge […]

Crisis Communications Management: The Ebola Expert vs. The Social Media Celebrity Alarmist

Trump Ebola 2

By Gerard Braud Social media complicates crisis communications, especially when an expert is pitted against alarmists and detractors on social media. Crisis communications and crisis management get more difficult when the social media alarmist is a celebrity. Donald Trump has taken to his Twitter account to say that people with Ebola should not be brought […]

Three Media Training and Crisis Communications Tips for Doctors and Employers

ebola

By Gerard Braud The current Ebola crisis has the media calling upon their medical experts to communicate about infected patients being flown to the United States for treatment. Media training for this type of crisis requires you to have a plan for how your doctors and physicians will respond if they are called upon to […]

3 Secrets to Undervaluing a Crisis Communication Plan

Braud Crisis Plan Stock Quote

By Gerard Braud Your expert crisis communication and public relations feedback is invited on this crisis communications case study. A global company called to inquire about my crisis communication plan program and training. Their corporate revenues are $2 billion dollars annually. The company stock trades at about $66 per share. It has about 8,000 employees […]

Crisis Communications Checklist: Four Hidden Problems that Lead to Failure

Free Crisis Plan Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud Public relations people are always searching for a free crisis communications checklist, as though some expert in crisis communications has the magic solution in a free template. Just search for crisis communications checklist, or free crisis communications checklist or free crisis communications template and you’ll see what I mean. The problem with […]

1 Confusing Name and 3 Things You Need to Know to Have to an Effective Crisis Communications Plan

Bowl of soup

By Gerard Braud Imagine this: You are eating dinner at a major corporate event. The event is only serving soup for dinner. You need only a spoon to eat the soup. However the table is set with a knife and fork. You don’t have the right tool for the right job. In other words, you […]

A Crisis Plan vs. a Crisis Communications Plan

By Gerard Braud One of the greatest problems in crisis management today is a lack of consistent definitions and names for the various plans needed by a business. You may read this and recognize you don’t have what you need. Crisis Plan Many companies have a document that they call a “Crisis Plan.” What they […]

7 Disturbing News Media Trends and How They Are Complicating Your PR Job

By Gerard Braud If your job is to communicate with the media, your job is becoming more complicated because of these disturbing news media trends: Trend #1: Media Speculation CNN has taken the sin of speculation to an all time high with their 24/7 speculation regarding the disappearance of Malaysia Flight 370. In the future, […]

The Conclusion of Disturbing Television News Trends

Daily show Mocks CNN

By Gerard Braud It is all about ratings. Television news is all about ratings. What gets on television news is less about the public’s need to know for the betterment of society and more about drawing in viewers, so as to increase advertising revenue. Television news is a business for profit, where once it was […]

How to Write a Crisis Communications Plan?

Gerard Braud Crisis Communications Plan

By Gerard Braud How to write a crisis communications plan? That is a PR question asked daily by corporate communicators. How about I show you how to write a crisis communications plan? How about we do it together? How about we take my 20 years of crisis communication plan templates and customize them so they […]

Disturbing Television Media Trend Bonus #8: Bad Imitation is Not Flattery

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By Gerard Braud It has been said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. But in television news, imitation is usually the sincerest form of panic and desperation. Case in point: On June 3rd the Today Show’s Al Roker planted a prize in a park in Dallas, Texas, then gave out clues on Twitter […]

Disturbing Television Media Trend #7: Unconfirmed Reports

Black Hole Theory CNN Malaysia

By Gerard Braud If the story of Chicken Little was told today, there is a strong likelihood that it would quickly be picked-up by, and reported by, the television news media. It would go like this: Chicken Little would have an acorn fall on her head, she would scream, “The sky is falling.” Minutes later […]

Disturbing Television News Trend #6: Social Media Backlash

DUmb parents tweets sailing

By Gerard Braud Social media is like a compass. A compass has 360 degrees or points on it. If you face one direction, the opposite direction is 180 degrees from you. In social media, any time you take a position on a topic, you can be assured that someone else has an opinion 180 degrees […]

Disturbing Television News Trend #5: Caught on Video

US coast guard saving family at sea

By Gerard Braud For three decades I’ve used the sarcastic mixed metaphor, “If a tree falls in the woods and it is not caught on video tape, is it news?” Never has this been more true than in today’s camera phone and social media sharing world. In the world of news, print can tell any […]

Disturbing Media Trend #3: Exclusive

NBC EXCLUSIVE

By Gerard Braud Who would have ever thought that your media interview would be proclaimed by the television news media as an exclusive, when your interview might only be a run-of-the-mill, routine interview? Day and night we see the television news media proclaiming in words and news banner graphics that an interview or news story […]

Disturbing News Trend #4: Trending Now

Whats Trending News

By Gerard Braud “Trending today” or “trending now” are phrases I hate to hear on television news. If news is defined as information that allows us to make smarter, more informed decisions, then a trending video of a cat playing with string is not news. Each day there is less news on news programs. News […]

Breaking News is Broken and there is Nothing Breaking: Disturbing Media Trend #2

Daily show Mocks CNN

By Gerard Braud News media copycats make life more difficult in the world of crisis communications and public relations. More than ever before, your small crisis can get undue media coverage because of the latest disturbing media trend. Disturbing news media trend #2 is the breaking news trend. CNN is the king of using the […]

Media Speculation Complicates Crisis Communications & Public Relations: Disturbing Media Trend #1

BREAKING NEWS CNN

By Gerard Braud If your job is to communicate with the media in the form of crisis communications or pro-active public relations for a good-news event, your life and job will become more complicated because of disturbing news media trend #1. Excessive speculation ranks as disturbing media trend #1. CNN has taken the sin of […]

7 Disturbing News Media Trends & How You Can Combat Them

CNN Tornado Post

By Gerard Braud The television news media continue to go from bad to worse. New disturbing trends have a huge impact on public relations, your media interactions, and the reputation and revenues of your employer. How do you combat these disturbing trends? Join media relations expert and former journalist Gerard Braud (Jared Bro) on Wednesday, […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Social Media Confusion in Crisis Communication

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By, Gerard Braud It is difficult to control what gets said on social media during a crisis. Often, the misinformation that is spread rapidly on social media causes panic and potential harm. Let’s look at a case study of Twitter gone bad when it hits the fan. When the Virginia Tech shooting occurred, Twitter was just […]

The Social Media Force Fit Versus the Right Fit for Crisis Communications

By Gerard Braud Your parents probably taught you there is a right place and a wrong place for everything. That is true for crisis communication and for social media. Many Gen X & Gen Y communicators think the bulk of their crisis communications can be done exclusively through social media. I disagree for many reasons. […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Social Media as the Cause of Your Crisis

YouTube Flicker Dominos Video1

By Gerard Braud As we examine the leadership gap, the generation gap, and shiny new object syndrome, let’s note that in many cases, in the world of crisis communications, social media can be a greater source of bad than good. The fact that a citizen can post a picture of a plane crash before the […]

Social Media When It Hits the Fan: NRECA Connect ’14 Conference Teach Back

CONNECT 14 TWIT PIC

By Gerard Braud Last week at the NRECA Connect 14 Conference in San Antonio, Texas, you participated in the  “Social Media When It Hits the Fan” presentation. Now I want to help you encourage your co-op managers to be better prepared for crisis communications, as well as to better understand social media and where social media […]

Social Media, Crisis Communications and the Severity Level of Your Crisis

Instagram

By Gerard Braud In every crisis communications plan that I write for a client, I have a page that establishes a severity level for the crisis. Traditionally the severity level is determined by injuries and/or fatalities, as well as the speed at which media cover the event, as well as how long the event remains in […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Social Media for Crisis Communication and the Generation Gap

Gerard braud burger king 2

By Gerard Braud As we discuss social media as a crisis communication tool that allows you to reach your core audience, this is a good time to explore what I will describe as both the leadership gap and the generation gap, that social media presents. People in leadership positions, traditionally perform poorly in a crisis because […]

Social Media When It Hits the Fan: Follow-up for NRECA Connect 14 Conference

Gerard Braud NRECA 14

By Gerard Braud Here are your Free Crisis Communications Plan resources we discussed during my NRECA conference presentation in San Antonio last week. Free Resource #1 To download a Free copy of the First Critical Statement used in my Crisis Communications Plan, use the coupon code CRISISCOMPLAN when you select the item from my shopping cart. […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Why Social Media is Great in a Crisis for Search Engine Optimization

Google-logo1

By, Gerard Braud When a crisis happens, people go to the Internet looking for information about your crisis. If your company, government agency or non-profit organization is experiencing a crisis, you want to control the flow of official information through effective crisis communicationand a good Crisis Communications Plan. (See How to Write a Crisis Communications Plan.) […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Crisis Communications and Social Media When You are a Little Part of a Big Story

Con Edison Power 2

By,  Gerard Braud Sometimes your company, government agency or non-profit organization experiences a crisis that is isolated just to your organization. Sometimes, your organization is part of a much bigger crisis, and while you have serious crisis issues to communicate, you are not the biggest part of the story. Social media is a terrific way to […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Combining Technology & Social Media for Crisis Communication

Gerard Braud Media Training and Crisis Communication with IPad IPhone

By Gerard Braud With no electricity for 5 days and 6 feet of water from Hurricane Isaac surrounding my house on the shore of Lake Pontchartrain near New Orleans, I became the go-to correspondent for CNN & The Weather Channel. Using only my iPhone, Skype and 3G, I was able to send reports first to […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: The Social Media Listening Post in Crisis Communication

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By Gerard Braud Let’s look at several case studies to understand the impact of social media when “it” hits the fan. Social media allows us to communicate in a crisis; social media fails on us during a crisis; social media can cause a crisis. Where do we start? Think of social media first as a […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Social Media Relationships Before Your Crisis

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By Gerard Braud In considering social media and crisis communication, let’s all agree that social media may cause your actual crisis. Other times, your crisis may be of your own making and social media then amplifies the crisis because of the chatter created in cyber space. Social media at its worst, clusters mean, anonymous people […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Are You a Social Media Hypocrite?

By, Gerard Braud As we talk about social media for crisis communication, we have to consider whether your audience uses social media and how they use it. But before we talk about them, we should talk about you and your personal social media habits. Some companies have no Facebook page, no Twitter, and no YouTube […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Effective Communications for Critical Times (Like When “It” Hits the Fan)

Twitter image

By Gerard Braud (Jared Bro) It is a challenge for public relations and crisis communication. In every workshop I teach, people ask, “How should a public  relations team, company, non-profit or government agency best use social media for crisis communication?”  They ask it from New Orleans to New York and everywhere in between. I respond […]

Crisis Team Truths

By Gerard Braud Many public relations people call their Crisis Communications Team a Crisis Team. The problem is, many other people in the same organization also claim to have a Crisis Team. We have word confusion. Every company should have these teams: 1. Crisis Management Team 2. Crisis Communications Team 3. Incident Command Team or […]

Crisis Plan Truths

crisis truth blog

By Gerard Braud Many public relations people who need a Crisis Communications Plan search for the words “crisis plan.” This leads to problems. Sometimes, as soon as you type the word “crisis,” your browser will auto fill with these options: Crisis Plan Template Crisis Plan Free Template Crisis Management Plan Crisis Communications Plan (with an […]

GM Hires Crisis Communication Expert

GM Crisis Expert

By Gerard Braud GM has hired a Crisis Communication Expert to help the company communicate their way out of a crisis surrounding their faulty ignition switches, according to headlines. Why do companies hire crisis communications experts after a crisis? Why don’t companies hire a crisis communications expert before they ever have a crisis? Why don’t […]

Postpone Your Crisis: Crisis Communication Wisdom with a Twist

K2 copy

By Gerard Braud Consider this: scheduling your crisis may be the wave of the future. Rather than being ambushed and surprised by a sudden crisis, which forces you into crisis communication, consider the model used by many of your leaders who ignore my plea to plan for the worst. Here is how it works. Many […]

Rural Electric Cooperative Communications: The Times Are Changing

electric co-op movie gerard braud

Consider this: Just a few years ago rural electric cooperatives were not under pressure to communicate rapidly with the media, members or employees. Today, you have less than one hour to control the flow of accurate information. There are three major reasons why this is changing and four things you can do to adjust to […]

Media Training in New Orleans, Baton Rouge & Louisiana

By Gerard Braud Media training in New Orleans, Baton Rouge and other cities in Louisiana carry a special set of challenges. Usually the training is for spokesmen – as in all men. Seldom is the media training for spokespeople, representing both genders. The spokesmen generally work in the oil and chemical industry. Most are not […]

Expert Advice for Media Training Key Messages

By Gerard Braud Can we have an intimate, professional conversation? The presumption is you are an expert in public relations and that the executives and leaders where you work need expert key messages for media training, to be an expert spokesperson. Here we go: Good looking Intelligent Public relations professional Mistakes of the past Bullet […]

Don’t be an April Fool: Avoid Media Interview Clichés

Worst speech in the world Gerard Braud

By, Gerard Braud The demand for media training increases each spring. Since media training requires well written key messages, the first thing I do is ask each media training client to send their existing key messages. This spring, those key messages seem to be filled with a renewed vigor for bad clichés that should never […]

Getting Ready to Get Ready to Get Started to Begin

Gerard braud blog

by Gerard Braud Corporate public relations moves too slow. Not a day goes by that I don’t have a phone call with a public relations person who is telling me what they can’t do and why they can’t do it. This trend concerns me gravely. I call this getting ready to get ready to get […]

The Great Crisis Communication Lie: A Plan Can’t Anticipate Everything

Crisis Communication movie gerard braud

By Gerard Braud It’s been said that the person who says something can’t be done is always right. Does this adage apply to crisis communication and crisis communications plans? The Malaysia Airlines crisis and communication challenges with the media and families have many in public relations saying, “This is unprecedented. You can’t prepare for this.” […]

Crisis Communication Case Study: Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia-Blog

By Gerard Braud Ask any expert in global crisis communications how Malaysia Airlines should be communicating during their crisis and you will get varied opinions. Having worked in Malaysia many times writing crisis communications plans and teaching media training, I would like to offer five things worth considering, should you face a prolonged crisis that […]

Media Training and Word Vomit (Ew! Gross)

word vomit

By Gerard Braud While teaching interview skills in a media training class, a participating executive provided expert insight to the lesson I was teaching. “So you don’t want us to word vomit everything we know in a media interview, right?” he asked. That isn’t how I would have phrased it, but now that I think […]

Who Should Be Your Spokesperson in a Crisis?

Entergy Drill Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud In media training and crisis communications training, there are many debates about who should be your spokesperson in a crisis. Here are three common arguments and what you should consider. Argument 1: The CEO Should Always Be the Spokesperson A CEO who wants to be the only spokesperson is destined for failure. […]

Re-Think Your Writing: Three Ways to Make Your Words Resonate With Your Audiences

By Gerard Braud Few people read to the end of an article. I have little confidence that you will read to the end of this article, even though the final thought may change your life and career. Every reader makes several judgments throughout each article as to whether they should move on or read on. […]

Crisis Management & Crisis Communication: The Justin Bieber Case

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By Gerard Braud In crisis management and crisis communication you must manage the rule of thirds, as it relates to your brand and the management of your reputation. Define the rule of thirds this way: One third of the audience loves you – and nothing can change that. One third of the audience hates you […]

Crisis Communications Plans Built to Fail: 3 Warning Signs and How to Avoid Them

By Gerard Braud Would you be disappointed to learn your crisis communications plan is built to fail? Here are three questions to ask to find out if you are destined for trouble when a crisis comes calling — or if you will manage your crisis like an expert. Warning Sign #1 What is the system […]

3 Symptoms of Emergency News Release Syndrome and 3 Ways to Deal With Them

Emergency News Release Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud Our last article focused on the need for public relations experts to be more strategic as they accomplish tactical tasks. You were reminded that the articles you write must result in behavior change. Your Tweets, Facebook posts and videos must also result in change such as better employee productivity, more sales, or […]

How Public Relations People Judge Success: One Monumental Secret to Achieving More Success in the Coming Year

Blog-Christmas

By Gerard Braud Public relations and communication professionals on a global basis are experts at creativity. One cute, creative holiday letter I received spoke volumes about how public relations people judge success and the urgent need for public relations people to rethink their approach. The card was a creative spoof of the dreaded “holiday letter” […]

Media Training Advice: 3 Lost Public Relations Opportunities in the Duck Dynasty Reaction

Phi on Blacks

By Gerard Braud Our focus on media training, crisis communications and public relations extends into the Duck Dynasty controversy and three lost opportunities. Put your politics, religion and personal views about gender, sexuality and race aside for a moment in order to put these observations into the context for which they are intended. Today’s primary […]

“I Cannot Tell A Lie” — If George Washington’s Quote Applied to Social Media and Public Relations

georgewashington

By Gerard Braud Yet one more group of public relations and marketing professionals has asked me to speak at their PR & Marketing conference about the wonderful ways social media will allow them to connect and sell to their customers. I love to speak at conferences, but I cannot tell a lie, especially about social […]

Newton to Media: Please Stay Away on Sandy Hook Anniversary

Sandy Hook 2

By Gerard Braud It is a bold move; perhaps unprecedented. Certainly in my career in crisis communications and my prior career as a reporter, I cannot recall a community that has suffered a crisis, asking the media to stay away. However, officials in Newtown, Connecticut are asking the media to stay away on December 14th, […]

Gerard Says Sorry About Spam Links – Got it Fixed (I hope)

Friends, I’m sorry about the spam that infiltrated the feed burner that delivers my blog to you. The system got hacked and the crisis guy had a crisis. Hopefully it has all been cleaned out. I value the fact that you subscribe to my blogs and hope we’ve seen the last of the bad guys. […]

Media Training for CEOs and Executives Worldwide May Save Their Jobs & Protect Their Profits – Ask Lululemon Founder Chip Wilson

Gerard Braud Media Training Manual

By Gerard Braud Every media training class I teach worldwide begins with this phrase: “If you could attach a dollar to every word that comes out of your mouth, would you make money or lose money?” Here is an image straight from my media training manual if you need proof. Here is a video lesson […]

Citizen Journalism: How Breaking News Got Broken and 5 Things You Need to Do Now

us-airways

By Gerard Braud Watch the news coverage as winter storms move across the United States, leaving many people without power in the cold for up to two weeks. Much of this story is being told through the eyes of the so-called, “citizen journalists.” Citizen journalism is one of the reasons breaking news got broken. While […]

Managing Expectations: 12 Crisis Communication Action Items for Winter Storms

winter storm cleon

By Gerard Braud Crisis Communications, a working Crisis Communication Plan as well as good media training skills will be critical in the next few days as bad weather moves across the United States. Before the weather gets to you, now is the time to begin managing the expectations of your customers and employees. Many of […]

3 Reasons Powerful People Say Dumb Things in Media Interviews

Click to watch video

By Gerard Braud Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has done it. So has Lululemon founder Chip Wilson. So have presidential candidates like Herman Cain and Sarah Palin. Each is guilty of saying dumb things in media interviews. Why do powerful people say dumb things in media interviews? Here are 3 reasons… First, powerful people fail to […]

Media Training Advice to Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

Toronto Media Training Braud

By Gerard Braud When media training a candidate, politician, or elected official, one of the hardest things to teach them is when to shut up. In every media training class I impart this expert advice to the trainee: “When you are digging a hole for yourself, put down the shovel.” Toronto May Rob Ford has […]

Navigate the Waters of Reputational Repair: 5 Steps to Effective Crisis Communications Planning

By Gerard Braud Navigating the waters of a crisis requires a good crisis communication plan before the waters ever begin to rise. Clear sunny day planning, long before your darkest day, is the secret. In today’s social media filled world, this has never been more true. Sadly, in our social media world some public relations […]

The Death of PR Perseverance (F-bombs included)

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By Gerard Braud Five public relations veterans, pontificating and dropping F-bombs over cocktails recently at the PRSA conference, concluded the biggest problem in PR today is the lack of perseverance by those in the media relations, public relations and the communication professions. Is this true or not true for you? Read on… I’ll describe the […]

Did Lululemon’s Crisis Communication Efforts on Social Media Create a Bigger Crisis?

reax Lululemon FB

By Gerard Braud A bad media interview caused by insufficient media training is creating a crisis communication problem on social media. Experts will weigh in on this, but I don’t think any one expert has the answer as to the best way to handle this. I really want to know what you think. The founder […]

Experts in Crisis Communication Agree: Home Depot Tweet Gone Wrong: 5 Things Your Public Relations Team Should Do Right Now

HD Tweet

By Gerard Braud Experts in crisis communication know social media in corporate communications is highly likely to lead to a crisis. I would say more brands are likely to be harmed than helped by a social media brand page. Home Depot leaders acted swiftly to fire an outside agency and an employee who posted a […]

Media Trainer Gives Advice to Chip Wilson, Lululemon Founder

Chip Wilson Bloomberg

By Gerard Braud Media training, media trainers and the executives and spokespeople who go through media training need to understand the importance of practicing before every media interview. Chip Wilson, Lululemon Founder is being criticized today for comments about how Lululemon pants only fit some women and the ongoing crisis or controversy over allegations that […]

LAX Airport Shooting – Crisis Communication Case Study Real Time

Twitter LAX

A shooting at the LAX Airport has the media scrambling to tell the story. The media are speculating with little or no official information. More than 90 minutes into the event I’ve not seen a spokesperson on CNN from the LAPD or from the LAX Airport. From a crisis communication standpoint in the world of […]

The Tricks & Treats of Facebook in a Crisis

WilliamsOlefins

By Gerard Braud Is Facebook your friend or foe in a crisis? The frightening truth is it really depends on a lot of factors. (Don’t be afraid to look at Facebook in an all new light when you join us for this special Halloween webinar.) Let us start with a discussion about your brand page. […]

Lesson 11: Test Your Security Team During Your Crisis Communications Drill

CrisisDrillGerardBraud

By Gerard Braud While working with crisis communications clients, I provide a “first critical statement” template.  This template is intended to be read to the media, emailed to employees, and posted to the web in the first hour of a crisis when little is known about the emerging crisis. Some companies that operate facilities that […]

Lesson 10: Mock Media in Your Face at Your Crisis Communication Drill: Six Great Tips

By Gerard Braud A real crisis is a pressure cooker and your crisis communications drill should replicate that. The pressure causes the media to be intense and often abrupt. The media may appear hostile. You will see similarities between media and sharks that sense blood in the water. Your crisis communications drill must duplicate that. […]

Lesson 9: How to Keep Your Crisis Communications Drill Realistic?

By Gerard Braud What a nice complement I received today after a crisis communications drill with a nuclear power plant and four government agencies. The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness thanked our mock media team for the intense questioning and realism of our news mock conferences. “I participated in a crisis drill […]

Lesson 8: Which Team is in Charge During Your Crisis Drill?

By Gerard Braud I worked in drills in which I facilitate everything on behalf of the crisis communications team, while also developing the scenario for the drill. I’ve also worked in drills in which the emergency manager selects the drill scenario and acts as lead facilitator. Simultaneously, I facilitate only the cascading events dealing with […]

Lesson 7: Who Should Know Details Before Your Crisis Communications Drill?

By Gerard Braud No one knows the hour or the day when a real crisis will strike, nor do they know how or when various events will cascade during the crisis. Your crisis communications drill needs to simulate as much of this as possible. In a crisis communications drill, chances are you need to let […]

Lesson 6: Who Should Participate in Your Crisis Communications Drill?

By Gerard Braud Various teams within your organization can organize crisis drills. If no one else within your company, government agency or non-profit is organizing an annual crisis drill, then individuals within the communications department can take the lead to organize a drill. Ideally, to get a well rounded drill you want to test your […]

Lesson 5: Equal Parts of Your Crisis Drill: Add Crisis Communication

By Gerard Braud  Too many crisis drills are lopsided. They are often organized by Emergency Managers who primarily want to measure the decision making and response time of those who must address the physical aspects of a crisis. Often missing from these drills is the realistic aspects of “pesky” reporters “getting in everybody’s way” and […]

Lesson 4: Test Your Crisis Communication Speed

By Gerard Braud How quickly can you get approval for and issue a statement to the media, your employees and other key stakeholders during a crisis? Your crisis communication plan should clearly spell out what is acceptable and what is not acceptable. It greatly disturbs me to see that some companies and government agencies think […]

Lesson 3: Test Your Crisis Communications Plan

By Gerard Braud There are many articles throughout this blog about what makes for a good crisis communications plan. I believe so many documents that proport to be crisis communications plans fall far short of what is needed to effectively communicate when “it” hits the fan. A great way to find out if your crisis […]

Lesson 2: “This is a Drill”

By Gerard Braud Rule number one during a crisis communications drill is to never have anyone accidentally think a real crisis is happening, when it is not. Hence, in all written communications and on every phone conversation and radio conversation, you must generously use the phrase, “This is a Drill.” For phone calls, the first […]

Lesson 1: Why Have a Crisis Communications Drill?

By Gerard Braud  Would you rather screw up in public or screw up in private? That’s really what a crisis communications drill is all about. On a clear sunny day you have the ability to practice for how you will respond and behave on your darkest day. A crisis communications drill is designed to allow […]

Washington Navy Yard Shooting: How the Daily Show Portrayed the Media’s Coverage

Daily Show Jon Stewart Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud Within the office here, I ranted at the media relentlessly about the horrible live coverage of the tragic events unfolding at the Washington Navy Yard. Only my assistant Shannon had to hear my rants. Fortunately, comedian Jon Stewart has the resource and video tape evidence to call out the media for the […]

PRSA Workshop Resources

As a PRSA member, here are some additional resources and links to supplement our program on social media, crisis communications, and secrets to effective communications when “it” hits the fan. 1) A copy of my First Critical Statement can be downloaded with this link. To download it for free, enter the coupon code CRISISCOMPLAN An […]

Social Media When “It” Hits the Fan

By Gerard Braud, CSP, Fellow IEC There is so much to hate about social media. Yet there are so many new avenues of communications available to you during a crisis, that it becomes hard to hate social media. On the other hand, during a crisis social media can blow up with excessive criticism and hate. […]

7 Things Your Crisis Communications Drill Should Test

By Gerard Braud A clear sunny day is the best time to deal with your crisis. Your darkest day is the worst time to deal with a crisis. Let me explain… A Crisis Communications Drill can simulate realistic emotions and pressures in a controlled environment, where you can mess up in private, rather than messing […]

Three Things Every PR Person Needs to Finish Before the End of the Year

Entergy Drill Gerard braud

By Gerard Braud The pretty stuff always gets more attention than the ugly stuff. Preparing for media interviews and crisis communications is not as sexy as a newsletter or brochure. But when “it” hits the fan, will your customers, employees and the media be remembering your great graphics? Or will they form their opinion of […]

23 Tutorials on How to Effectively Use Social Media When the Next Katrina Hits

Today marks two years since Hurricane Isaac and ten years since Hurricane Katrina. In that short time between these two hurricanes, media relations and crisis communications has been affected by social media and technology. Are you ready to effectively communicate in your next big natural disaster, be it a tornado, snow storm, forest fire or […]

Breaking News: McNair Elementary School Shooting in DeKalb County, Georgia: Lessons in Crisis Communication

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We interrupt this blog with Breaking News. A school shooting at McNair Elementary School in DeKalb County, Georgia is sadly duplicating the same crisis communication failures that we began to outline in this morning’s article and the serious written and awaiting posts in the coming days. Our goal is not to belittle this school or […]

Crisis Communication for Schools: Part 3 Pain, Problem and Predicament

USF Web Crisis All Clear

By Gerard Braud Information drives the world. It drives opinion, it causes misconceptions, and it causes confusion. Information — good and bad — is at our fingertips 24/7 though mobile devices and the Internet. Yet in crisis after crisis, official communications is slow. Slow communications often leads to additional deaths and injuries. In any sudden […]

Crisis Communications for Schools Part 2: Defining a Crisis and a Crisis Plan

By Gerard Braud For the purpose of our discussion in these articles, we will define a crisis this way: A crisis is any incident that may seriously affect the safety, function, operation, reputation and/or revenue of any organization, public or private. We will not debate or parse words as to whether what is called a […]

Crisis Communication for Schools: Part 1

StudentsGerardBraud

By Gerard Braud If you have school age kids, you’ve likely gotten a text message or phone message about some type of emergency or non-emergency at school. While useful for emergency notification, these systems are not a substitute for having and using a Crisis Communications Plan. Out next few articles will answer the questions: What […]

This CEO is a Train Wreck: 9 Crisis Communication Lessons You Can Learn

Trainwreck CEO

By Gerard Braud Crisis communications requires fast comment from company officials when a crisis happens. The spokespeople must also have media training and must be flawless in their news conference. In a major crisis, you should be talking with the media within one hour or less of the onset of the crisis. The CEO featured […]

YouTube, Media Relations & Crisis Communications for Cleveland Kidnapping Victims

By Gerard Braud YouTube is great for crisis communications. It is even more powerful when this social media tool is combined with traditional crisis communications and media relations. Hats off to my colleague Barbara Paynter at Hennes Paynter Communications for the way her team used YouTube with regard to the three Cleveland women who underwent […]

Three Media Lessons from Paula Deen

Paula Deen Today Show

by Gerard Braud “I is what I is, and I’m not going to change.” That is the costly statement made by Paula Deen to Matt Lauer in an NBC Today Show. “If you could attach a dollar to every word you say, would you make money or lose money?” Those are the first words every […]

Tutorial #23: Now is the Time for PIOs and Official Spokespeople to Embrace and File CNN iReports

Tutorial #23 by Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #22: Keep it Short

Tutorial #22 by Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #21: Great New Gadgets for iReporting and Web Videos

Tutorial #21 by Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #20: Crap is King

Tutorial #20 By Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #19: How to Shoot and Why to Send B-Roll to CNN

Tutorial #19 By Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #18: How You Can Create Great Videos Holding Your iPad or iPhone at Arm’s Length

Tutorial #18 by Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #17: Using SKYPE.com for Live Reports on CNN & HLN

Tutorial #17 by Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #16: The Secrets to Adding Movement to Your Web Videos

Tutorial #16 By Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #15 Determining When to Use Ear Buds and Headphones for Interviews on Your iPad or iPhone

Tutorial # 15 By Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis […]

Tutorial #14: Framing and the Rule of Thirds for Your Web Videos

Tutorial #14 By Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

Tutorial #13 The Secrets to Good Audio for Your Web Videos

Tutorial #13 By Gerard Braud, iReporter Evangelist (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is part of a series of articles that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication […]

CNN iReport Tutorials Index

Tutorial #3 Still Gerard Braud

(Perspective: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 reporters. This is an index of a series of 23 lessons that share how to be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.)     […]

Dark Day Crisis Planning Must Begin on a Sunny Day

By Gerard Braud Few organizations in the world face the communications challenges of America’s Rural Electric Cooperatives. On any given day customers could be protesting over electric rates. Workers could be under attack for disconnecting service. Board members could be scrutinized for per diems, travel or expenses. Add to that the growing influence of negative […]

Learn to Use the Technology You Need for Crisis Communications Using Your Smart Phone

By Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} Everything […]

Get the Right Technology to be a CNN iReporter

By Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

Crisis Communication for West Texas Fertilizer Plant in Waco: Why PIOs, Emergency Managers and PR People Should be Using CNN iReports

By, Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

iReports for Public Relations and Crisis Communications: Why Your Company or Government Organization Should Create a CNN iReport Account Today

CNN Ireport Account

By Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

Manage the Expectations of Your Audience: Story Telling Secrets of the Media and a CNN iReporter

By Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

Compare and Contrast News Stories: Secrets of the Media

Isaac Flooding Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

Get the Right Tools to Be a Good iReporter

Tropical Storm Lee iReport

By Gerard Braud  {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

Set Up Your CNN iReport Account on a Clear Sunny Day

By, Gerard Braud {Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.} […]

Hurricane Isaac: iReports Before, During and After. Is This Guy Crazy?

IReport Voting page

By, Gerard Braud (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.) […]

How a Guy in Mandeville, Louisiana Became the Source of Breaking News

Isaac Ireport Gerard Braud

By, Gerard Braud (Editor’s note: In 2013, CNN selected me as one of their top iReporters, out of more than 11,000 iReporters. This is part of a series of articles about how you can be a good iReporter and how to make CNN iReports a vital part of your crisis communication and media relations strategy.) […]

Crisis Communication Priorities for a Sudden Crisis

Airplane

(Writer’s note: Please take 15 seconds of your time to vote for me to win a CNN I-report award for my in-depth storytelling and reporting on Hurricane Isaac.  With your vote, I can win the Community Choice Award. Your first vote is greatly appreciated, but to make an even bigger impact you can vote everyday […]

Dark Day Crisis Planning Must Begin on a Sunny Day

By Gerard Braud Few organizations in the world face the communications challenges of America’s Rural Electric Cooperatives. On any given day customers could be protesting over electric rates. Workers could be under attack for disconnecting service. Board members could be scrutinized for per diems, travel or expenses. Add to that the growing influence of negative social […]

What Are the Secrets to a Crisis Communications Plan?

(Writer’s note: Every day in March we’ll have a fresh, free, new article on this topic. If you’d like to dig deeper, you may wish to purchase a recording of the teleseminar called Social Media & Crisis Communications. Here is your purchase link.) By Gerard Braud It is critical to pick the right tools for crisis […]

Be a Control Freak with Your Crisis Communication

(Writer’s note: Every day in March we’ll have a fresh, free, new article on this topic. If you’d like to dig deeper, you may wish to purchase a recording of the teleseminar called Social Media & Crisis Communications. Here is your purchase link.) By Gerard Braud Your first choice when “it” hits the fan should be […]

Prescriptions for Great Media Interviews: Secrets You Need to Know Before Talking to Reporters

By Gerard Braud The doctor’s resume was impressive. It demonstrated a successful practice, plus a history of research and teaching. The ABC News program 20/20 wanted to do a story about the doctor’s research. The teaching hospital selected me to be the media trainer. After the best research possible, to prepare, I called the public […]

The Media Are Listening in a Crisis

(Writer’s note: Every day in March we’ll have a fresh, free, new article on this topic. If you’d like to dig deeper, you may wish to purchase a recording of the teleseminar called Social Media & Crisis Communications. Here is your purchase link.) By Gerard Braud Among those listening and fostering social media are the mainstream […]

How to Write a Crisis Communications Plan? Start With the End in Mind

(Writer’s note: Every day in March we’ll have a fresh, free, new article on this topic. If you’d like to dig deeper, you may wish to purchase a recording of the teleseminar called Social Media & Crisis Communications. Here is your purchase link.) By Gerard Braud Using social media for crisis communications is still our primary […]

How to Write a Crisis Communications Plan with Pre-Written Statements

Gerard Braud * 15

By Gerard Braud In crisis communications, you should have two types of pre-written communication documents. The first is for fast release, called a “First Critical Statement.” Some companies call these “holding statements.” The First Critical Statement is a way to tell the world that a) a crisis has happened, b) you know about it, c) your […]

How to Write a Crisis Communication Plan? Step One: Identify What Could Go Wrong?

By Gerard Braud (Writer’s note: Every day in March we’ll have a fresh, free, new article on this topic. If you’d like to dig deeper, you may wish to purchase a recording of the teleseminar called Social Media & Crisis Communications. Here is your purchase link.) The decision to use social media for crisis communications is […]

Burger King Twitter Account Hacked: A Whopper of a Mess

Gerad Braud Burger King

By Gerard Braud In 2013 there is no excuse for such failed crisis communications. Any and every company should be ready to make a public statement on any crisis in one hour or less. It is good public relations; it is good media relations; it is good crisis communication; it is good social media crisis […]

“I Cannot Tell A Lie” — If George Washington’s Quote Applied to Social Media and Public Relations

By Gerard Braud Yet one more group of public relations and marketing professionals has asked me to speak at their PR & Marketing conference about the wonderful ways social media will allow them to connect and sell to their customers. I love to speak at conferences, but I cannot tell a lie, especially about social […]

The Super Bowl of Quotes: How Media Training Can Make You an Expert Spokesperson

Gerard_Saints_Quote-350x257

As a public relations expert, what would be your Super Bowl victory? How about having a front page headline quote? Here is the inside story on how I scored a front page headline quote when the New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl in 2010… and how you and your spokespeople can learn to do […]

Lone Star College Shooting – Crisis Communication Case Study

Web Notice - Bad copy

I’m frustrated by the continued failure by schools and colleges to communicate well during a crisis. Rather than adding thoughts here, please visit http://blog.schoolcrisisplan.com/?p=95

What Leaders & PR People Can Learn from Lance Armstrong: Denial & Crisis Communication

Gerard Braud Lance Armstrong Crisis

By Gerard Braud Lance Armstrong’s denial of doping over the years provides a valuable crisis communications and public relations case study for analyzing denial by powerful people and how they communicate in a crisis. This is important for two reasons: 1) Public relations people may give excellent advice and professional council, but be rebuffed by […]

One Month After Sandy Hook: Effective Crisis Communications In Critical Times

One Month After Sandy Hook Elementary: Effective Crisis Communications In Critical Times  By Gerard Braud (Free conference call – Listen on Demand REGISTRATION IS FREE TO ALL) [Editor’s Note: I recall the morning I received a frantic call from my daughter when there was a shooting on her campus. The school failed on a grand scale […]

Super Storm Sandy, Hurricane Isaac and the Latest Social Media & Crisis Communications Strategies for Communicating During a Natural Disaster

CNN iReport Lee Web

The audio recording and handouts for this event are available for those who missed this webinar. The registration link allows you to purchase the recording from December 6, 2012. Register Now for Only $99 As we exit hurricane season and enter the season of winter storms, it is time to take a fresh look at […]

3 Dead in Murder-Suicide: The Time is Never Right to a Write a Crisis Communications Plan

Friday 2 people were murdered, then the killer killed himself. One of the murders, as well as the suicide, was done “in the workplace.” I won’t say where, out of respect for the privacy of the person who called me the day before. All of this happened where he works. Just 24-hours before, on Thursday, […]

New Buzzword: Pogo Stick December 1, 2013

Be it known to the world that on this day, I, along with my colleagues in the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), begin a test. Because we are all fed up with silly buzzwords, we have decided to introduce our own meaningless phrase into the corporate buzzword conversation. The new buzzword is “Pogo Stick.” […]

Write and Complete a World-Class Crisis Communications Plan in the Two Most Intense and Productive Two Days of Your Career

Join Global Crisis Communications Expert Gerard Braud in Denver, CO October 29 & 30, 2012 Save Time – Save Money – Save Lives Watch this video on YouTube via this link Watch the video in your browser below by clicking on the image You need a Crisis Communications Plan, but you don’t have time to […]

Penn State – Sandusky Report – Crisis Communication Expert Observations

By Gerard Braud Penn State and Jerry Sandusky are making crisis communications headlines today because of a new report prepared for Penn State. What every university, corporation and institution should take away from this is a global lesson about crisis management, crisis communications and how to handle a smoldering crisis the way an expert would […]

The Worst Speech in the World

The Worst Speech in the World By Gerard Braud ©2012 Diversified Media, LLC dba Gerard Braud Communications Preamble: CEOs and executives use far too many buzzwords and clichés. Soon the bad language infects the entire company. So when the International Association of Business Communicators asked me to present a session called, “Don’t Say That! Say This!,” I went to LinkedIn and […]

Beware the Ides of March: Wisdom for Crisis Communications & Public Relations

Beware the Ides of March

The phrase, “Beware the Ides of March,” has always been a favorite chant of mine. Billy or B-Shakes, to his friends, also known formally as William Shakespeare, penned the line for his play Julius Caesar. A soothsayer warns Caesar, “Beware the Ides of March,” forewarning that Julius would be killed on… you guessed it, March […]

National Speakers Association (NSA) New Orleans: Home of New Orleans Keynote Speakers

The National Speakers Associations of New Orleans (NSA New Orleans) has been the foundation of my professional speaking career, positioning me as a keynote speaker in New Orleans, as well as a conference presenter and keynote speaker on 5 continents. NSA New Orleans has allowed me to focus on being an expert in media training […]

Media Training Tip: What to do Before the End of the World

communications planning photo

The Mayan calendar ends in December 2012 and many have wondered if this signals the end of the world. One colleague jokingly asked me if her company could forgo Media Training and writing a Crisis Communications Plan in 2012, because the world may end. She has been putting off these tasks for two years. Each […]

Media Training and Crisis Communications Tip: Reporters Will Interview Anyone Who Will Talk (Who Are Often People with No Teeth and Live in Trailers)

isis-Communication-Plan-In-Action-Braud Communications

Let’s be respectful here and realize that many poor people don’t have either dental insurance or the ability to pay out of pocket for dental care. And let’s realize that while hoping to someday fulfill the dream of home ownership, many people live in an affordable alternative – a mobile home. Let’s also recognize that […]

Virginia Tech Shooting Today: Crisis Communications Case Unfolding – Social Media Impact

Virginia Tech Shooting - Gerard Braud blog

Virginia Tech has another school shooting today. Two have died. Please keep these people in your prayers today. For those who are students of Crisis Communications – both university students and public relations professionals wishing to learn more about proper crisis communications in the age of social media – today is sadly one of those […]

Media Training Tip: Don’t Leave The Audience Thinking “What Does That Mean?”

media training gerard braud

What bugs the ever living daylights out of me is hearing people speak in mumble jumble that they think means something, but it means nothing at all. This mumble jumble is corporate speak, buzzwords, jargon and government acronyms. I’m fortunate enough that people pay me an honorarium to speak at numerous conferences, corporate meetings and […]

Media Training and Crisis Communication Training: The Myth about 3 Key Messages

Media Training Key Messages

Media training teaches the concept of identifying your “3 Key Messages.”  In other words, what are the 3 most important things you need to communicate during your interview with the reporter? But what exactly is a key message? Is it a bullet point? Is it a talking point? Is it a set of words that […]

Media Training Coach Tip: The Facts Don’t Matter

gerard braud media training facts

One day, as a joke in the newsroom, I uttered the phrase, “Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story.” We all laughed. A colleague was pushing for a story to make the evening news, but there were lots of holes in the story and I wanted my story to be […]

So… The new International Media Training No-No

Media Training - Gerard Braud - Braud Communications

Soooooo…. I’ve noticed a new trend. Soooooo…. it appears people think every sentence needs to start with “Soooooo….” Soooooo…. stop it already! I first noticed this alarming trend while teaching media training to a global defense contractor in Los Angeles in 2010. One engineer — a lead engineer –started every sentence with “Soooooo….” It was driving […]

Media Coach Training Tip: Fight for your Reputation! How to Respond to Negative Media Attention

Braud Communications Training web photo

I find it unbelievable that in the 21st century we still find executives who don’t want to take on a reporter or news outlet that has wrongly damaged their reputation. The traditional way of responding to a media outlet that makes a factual error is to ask the management for a retraction. But sometimes the […]

Media Coach Training Tip: Control the Interview Questions with Leading Answers

Braud Communications Interview with Media Photo

I want you to think for a moment about the last interview you did with a reporter. The reporter asks you a question then you start talking. Think very carefully now – what were you wondering the entire time you were answering the question? In most cases, my media training students will confess that the entire […]

Media Training Coach Tip: The Top 4 Reasons Media are Considered Biased

Gerard Braud Communication with media

There is much debate about whether the media are biased; especially whether there is a liberal bias. If you truly want to explore that subject, I suggest you read the book Bias by Bernard Goldberg. (http://www.amazon.com/Bias-Insider-Exposes-Media-Distort/dp/0895261901) It has been my experience over the years that much of what is perceived as bias is really the […]

Media Training Coach Tip: The #1 Technique to Shut Down Reporter Speculation

Braud Communications media training tip

As a media training speaker and media training coach, my clients can sometimes find themselves asking, “What’s the worst that could happen? How much worse could it get? But what if…?” Oh, those great “what if” questions – reporters love those.  Why?  Well, reporters love a great story and sometimes the story doesn’t materialize the […]

Media Training of the Future for Your Emergency Operations Center, Emergency Manager, and Public Information Officer

Braud Communications Technology Crisis

How to Improve Your Crisis Communication During a Disaster It was a surprise to many Emergency Managers and Public Information Officers. After being in demand for telephone interviews during Tropical Storm Lee on September 3-5, 2011 near New Orleans, The Weather Channel opted to start taking live reports from a resident on the front porch […]

Social Media Revolutions & How to Write a Social Media Policy

How to Write Your Social Media Policy March 1st Webinar Plus the Social Media Revolution – What You Can Learn from Global Events The time is NOW. Social Media is changing nations. But are you watching from the sidelines or digging in and learning how this affects your communications where you work and with your […]

Top 3 Goals for Communicators in 2011

When we look back at the last year and look ahead to this year, I see 3 things that every communicator should do in order to be successful. The 3 things are: 1) Be strategic 2) Be opportunistic, and 3) Be Persistent When communicators ask for advice, I often tell them to know the difference […]

Don’t Repeat the Negative – Media Training Expert Tips

Christine O'Donnell

You would think that in 2010, spokespeople would be smart enough not to repeat a negative phrase as part of an interview or as a phrase in an advertising campaign. Surprisingly, it still goes on. This month, the country of Colombia has launched a new tourism campaign. So what do you think of when you […]

Free Teleseminar May 10-14 with Gerard Braud

If you have to talk to the media or train people who have to talk to the media, here is a free teleseminar opportunity for you. May 10-14, a group of All-Star A-Lists hosts will be interviewing author Gerard Braud (Jared Bro) about his new book, Don’t Talk to the Media: 29 Secrets You Need […]

Don’t Talk to the Media – Gerard Braud’s New Media Training Book

Gerard Braud Author Book

Gerard Braud outlines the 29 Secrets you need to know before you open your mouth to a reporter. Get more details at: http://www.donttalktothemedia.com/

Executive Media Training – Gerard Braud – New Orleans Saints – Super Bowl Parade

Gerard_Saints_Quote

In the Executive Media Training classes I teach, I always emphasize the power of a verbatim quote as a key message, rather than relying on talking points and the ad lib problems associated with talking points. So to prove the power of a pre-planned, verbatim quote, I recently set out to literally be the one-in-a-million […]

Gerard Braud is a Sound Bit Stud – Coming Monday

Media Training in New Orleans Lesson coming this Monday. Don’t miss the one-in-a-million quote.

Crisis Communications 2010 and the Tiger Woods Scandal

By Gerard Braud It’s hard to believe that in 2010, people can still screw up public relations, crisis communications, crisis management and media relations, as much as Tiger Woods and his handlers. Friday’s statement by Woods was old school. It was bad. It was too little. It was too late. The Gerard Braud school of […]

Leadership and Crisis Communications – Sins of 2009 & How to Redeem Yourself in 2010

This is our 5th and final day of looking back at the sins of 2009 and ways to redeem ourselves for 2010. Today we’ll look at what leaders don’t know. In 2009 I launched a new keynote called, Leadership When “It” Hits the Fan. It has placed me on the stage in front of a […]

Tweet Heard ‘Round the World – Crisis Communications & Social Media

January 15, 2009 generated the Tweet Heard ‘Round the World, as a TwitPic became the first official news coverage of an airplane landing in the Hudson River. We’ll discuss this game changer and the changing face of crisis communications in a special teleseminar called, “Social Media When It Hits the Fan.” Please register now. Tuesday, […]

Social Media Crisis Communications & Shiny New Objects – Sins of 2009

Today we’re going to look at one of the biggest sins of 2009… shiny new objects syndrome. When I look back at 2009, I’ll remember it as the year that people became obsessed with Twitter and Facebook. Seems everywhere I turned, people were clamoring over these shinny new objects… like aborigines who have seen themselves […]

Gerard Braud – Being Opportunistic – PR Sins of 2009 & How to Redeem Yourself in 2010

As we look back at the sins of 2009 and ways to redeem yourself in 2010, today’s lesson is about how to be opportunistic. Opportunistic means you take advantage of a situation to get what you want. Maybe it is because I grew up in a large family and had to fight my 3 older […]

Gerard Braud – The Sins of 2009 & How to Redeem Yourself in 2010 – Tuesday

This week we’re looking at the Sins of 2009 and how to redeem yourself in 2010. Today’s topic is “No” Doesn’t Mean “No!” 2009 was a year when we heard “no” a lot at work. Request for new projects, new training, new budgets, were often greeted with a big fat, flat out “no.” A colleague […]

Top Sins of 2009 & How to Redeem Yourself for 2010 – Monday

For the next 5 days we’ll be looking at the sins of 2009… and what you can do to redeem yourself in 2010. Each year when I look back and look ahead for this program, I generally focus on crisis communications, media training and public relations. But this year, we need to take some time […]

Executive Media Training 101 for Kanye West

by Gerard Braud gerard@braudcommunications.com www.braudcommunications.com www.crisiscommunications.com Kanye West — You were on Jay Leno last night. Your had a chance. You blew it. So here’s a free Media Training 101 course — Your key message should have been, “I’m sorry.” In 3 minutes on the air you never got around to saying those simple words. […]

Misinformation Alert: Media Training & Crisis Communications Plans, NIMS, Emergency Communications & More from Gerard Braud

Big warning on the BraudCast today. Big warning as we commemorate September 11th. Big warning as we remember August 29th, the recent anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Big warning as your kids go back to school. Big warning for all executives. Big warning for everyone in public relations. Why all the warnings? After September 11th and […]

H1N1 Swine Flu Crisis Communications Plan & Resources

Here are three incredible resources, ranging from Free to very affordable, to help you with your Fall 2009 communications challenges as: • Swine flu is escalating • Budgets are tight • Staffs are reduced • Resources are limited Here they are: 1) Write a full crisis communications plan in just 2-day at 4 locations across […]

Media Training, Whole Foods, Health Care Reform & Cow Poop

The most fundamental rule of media training that I discuss with every executive is this: “If you could attach a dollar to every word that comes out of your mouth, would you make money or lose money?” That brings us to Whole Foods and the much publicized letter to the editor in the Wall Street […]

Crisis Communications, Michael Jackson & Your Executives

I’ve been wanting to share these thoughts with you since the story first broke about the death of Michael Jackson, but I thought some may consider it insensitive or overtly opportunistic too close to his death. But now that some time has passed, let’s examine what we, as communicators, can learn from the death of […]

H1N1 Swine Flu Crisis Communications Plans in Vacation Land – Mexico and the Swine Flu

I’m just back from a summer vacation to Mexico, where I’ve been thinking about you. My wife, 2 daughters and I went on our annual scuba diving trip to Cozumel, Mexico, to find the island is virtually deserted because tourists are afraid they’ll get the Swine Flu. One tourism official tells me it is worse […]

Obama’s 7 Deadly PR Sins & Brew-ha-ha

It is rather timely that the biggest news story of this past week is among one of the most basic lessons of media training … which is, never speculate. Media darling and President of the United States, Barack Obama, proved that even the best spokespeople are not perfect… and up until now, he has been […]

Tweets on University of South Florida

Interesting Tweets… trying to find out how many students are talking. Interesting that media, including Ann Curry, are sending Tweets to students. Other news media giving a live video feed link.

University of South Florida Gunman

University of South Florida in Tampa — A story is unfolding about a possible gunman on campus. It appears text messaging and loud speakers are being used on campus. The school has a notice on their home page. Good use of the website. http://www.usf.edu/index.asp I have not yet found a news release in their online […]

Lesson 29: Conclusion

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com We began this 29 lesson discussion with the admonition, “Don’t talk to the media.” The original admonition was that you speak through the media to your audience and the media’s audience. But as we conclude, let me take this thought a bit further. We’ve poured out for you 29 lessons of […]

Lesson 28: Speaking Off the Record

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com   Never agree to speak off the record. This lesson really could end with just that phrase: Never speak off the record. Speaking off the record has been taboo among the wisest media trainers and public relations sages for decades, but rarely do I teach a media training class in which […]

Lesson 27: Body Language

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com What you don’t say is often as important or more important than what you do say, when you are talking to a reporter. How you stand, how you act, how you fidget, how you move, how you stutter, how you sit, and where you look, all says a lot about you. […]

Lesson 26: Looks are Important

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Looks are important. With just three lessons left to go, I would be remiss not to cover some important basics, such as how to dress for a news conference. Dress for men has always been easier than dress for women in the world of media. That’s because men’s fashions tend to […]

Lesson 25: Social Media Training

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  The internet, the media on the internet, and the proliferation of self-ordained pundits on the internet, has forever changed the world. So has the proliferation of gadgets that let us rapidly post pictures, comments and video to the web. The ability for the global community to post online comments in countless […]

Lesson 24: Death by News Conference

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Many reporters fear what I often call “death by news conference.” In lesson 17 we discussed the concept of committing news as a premeditated act. Reporters hate to cover news conferences for two main reasons. The first reason is because usually there are way too many spokespeople saying little if anything […]

Lesson 23: Selecting the Right Spokesperson

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Picking the right spokesperson really depends upon the situation. Many organizations tend to have two extremes in selecting spokespeople. Some organizations always send out their top PR person while other organizations insist that only the CEO speak. I endorse neither of these approaches as perfect and will suggest that sometimes the […]

Lesson 22: The Power of Passion

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  Few things are as underestimated in a media interview as the passion a spokesperson conveys. In lesson #8 we talked about why the facts don’t matter and how to create great quotes. If you learn to combine great quotes with passion you not only insure your quote gets used in a […]

Lesson 21: The Secret to Handling Negative Questions

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Most questions from most reporters are negative. News in general tends to be negative because it is usually about serious change or a disaster. I wish news wasn’t negative, but I spent 15 years in the business trying to change that and couldn’t. Then I’ve spent every year since 1994 trying […]

Lesson 20: The Secret to Internalizing Key Messages

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com In the early stages of media training, many students are skeptical about the concept of key messages. Accepting key messages and using key messages effectively takes time and practice. As I mentioned in lesson 15, in most media training classes I first conduct a baseline interview, then I introduce the concept […]

Lesson 19: Preparing for a Desk Side Visit

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  If you are a big organization, occasionally a reporter from a major media outlet will call and ask for permission to do a “desk side visit.” Be careful. These can be deadly. A desk side visit is when a reporter wants to come by the office, not to write a particular […]

Lesson 18: Practicing for the Big Negative News Story

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  So far we’ve discussed what an ordinary media training program includes and we’ve discussed the need to practice before every interview. But if you are being interviewed about a negative issue by an investigative reporter or a major publication or network news magazine, you need more than your average media training […]

Lesson 17: What Makes the Media Say Wow! – Commit News

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com As a reporter, I generally hated going to a news conference or a media event that was about good news. It’s not that I’m opposed to covering good news, it’s just that generally the spokespeople were poorly prepared and the organizers were completely oblivious of the wants, needs and desires of […]

Lesson 16: Practice, even if you only have 5 minutes

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com In our last lesson we talked about how to structure a media training class and how I always tell the executives I train that they must practice before every interview, even if they only have 5 minutes.  I’d like to expand on that and explain why this is so important. I […]

Lesson 15: How to Structure Media Training

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com One of the most difficult challenges I have in my job as a media trainer is to get executives to carve out time in their schedule for training. As mentioned in lesson 2, some don’t see the financial benefit. An even greater percentage are afraid of what ever embarrassment they may […]

Lessons 14: Reporters Like to Speculate

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  What’s the worst that could happen? How much worse could it get? But what if… ? Oh, those great “what if” questions. Reporters love the what if question. Why? Well, reporters lover a great story and sometimes the story doesn’t materialize the way they hoped it would. Remember all the lessons […]

Lesson 13: The Vote of Confidence or No Confidence

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com In lesson 11 we discussed the fact that when there is an industrial accident and a spokesperson does not appear in a timely manner, reporters often go looking for facts and quotes from other people, such as the ones with no teeth who live in trailers. Something else happens, which also […]

Lesson 12: Passing the Cynic Test

By Gerard Braud (sign up for the free audio version of this program at gerard@braudcommunications.com) Reporters are among the biggest cynics in the world. They doubt everything you tell them and you have to prove everything to them. This is especially true if you are trying to promote a good news story. I have found […]

Lesson 11: Why do they interview people with no teeth who live in a trailer (with all due respect to trailer dwellers)

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Let’s be respectful here and realize that many poor people don’t have either dental insurance or the ability to pay out of pocket for dental care. And let’s realize that while hoping to someday fulfill the dream of home ownership, many people live in an affordable alternative – a mobile home. […]

Lesson 10: What Does That Mean?

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  The question I ask most often these days is, “What does that mean?” I’m relatively well educated. I’m well read. I travel the world constantly teaching media relations and crisis communications. But what bugs the ever living daylights out of me is hearing people speak in mumble jumble that they think […]

Lesson 9: The Myth about 3 Key Messages

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  So in the last lesson, we talked about not letting facts get in the way of a good story. The secret is to keep it simple. When you go through media training (which I enjoy teaching more than anything in the world and I would still do every day even if […]

Lesson 8: The Facts Don’t Matter

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com One day, as a joke in the newsroom, I uttered the phrase, “don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story.” We all laughed. A colleague was pushing for a story to make the evening news, but there were lots of holes in the story and I (who […]

Lesson 7: Never get in a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  I find it unbelievable that in the 21st century we still find executives who don’t want to take on a reporter or news outlet that has wrongly damaged their reputation. The traditional way of responding to a media outlet that makes a factual error is to ask the management for a […]

Have You Stopped Communicating Yet?

Here’s a new warning about the Swine Flu. Beware if you work in an organization where everything is quickly going back to normal and you’re being told to cease all communications related to the Swine Flu. The reality is the Swine Flu doesn’t appear to be spreading at catastrophic pandemic rates, but in the world […]

Lesson 6: I Wonder What the Next Question Will Be?

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  I want you to think for a moment about the last interview you did with a reporter. The reporter asks you a question then you start talking. Think very carefully now – what were you wondering the entire time you were answering the question? In most cases, my media training students […]

Lesson 5: The Media is Biased

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com There is much debate about whether the media are biased; especially whether there is a liberal bias. If you truly want to explore that subject, I suggest you read the book Bias by Bernard Goldberg. It has been my experience over the years that much of what is perceived as bias […]

Lesson 4: They Took Me Out of Context and They Left My Best Stuff on the Cutting Room Floor

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com The 2 single biggest complaints I have heard from executives over the years, after they have done an interview, is that “the reporter took me out of context” or that “the reporter left my best stuff on the cutting room floor.” (If you are young, the cutting room is where film […]

Lesson 3: It’s About Me

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com My wife often reminds me that it’s “not about me.” But she forgets that I come from a 15 year career as a journalist, where everything was about me. Everyday it was my story; my interviews; my scoop. Reporters have big egos. Accept it. You can’t change it so don’t even […]

Lesson 2: The Big IF

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com The Big IF is what I call my philosophy of media training. I ask every executive that I media train this all important question: If you could attach a dollar to every word that comes out of your mouth, would you make money or lose money? This is true for corporations […]

Media Training: Don’t Talk to the Media

Gerard-Braud-Author-Book

by Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com This first lesson may seem counter intuitive, so let me explain what I mean. You don’t want to talk to the media, but to the media’s audience. Ask yourself, who is that audience and how smart are they? The general rule is that the average person who watches TV news has […]

Swine Flu Rumors & Haig – Biden Syndrome

Swine Flu and Crisis Communications are our topic this morning. Two of the worst classic behaviors of crisis communications are beginning to take shape as we get several days into the Swine Flu hysteria. So I come to you today with warnings so that you can look for these behaviors, then I want to give […]

Swine Flu

Swine Flu – those should be the first words out of your mouth when you get to the office today. The fact that there is a new global pandemic threat could be the best thing to happen to your communications and public relations department all year. Why? Because corporate leaders will be willing to spend […]

Adjusting for Shut Down Newspapers & Laid Off Reporters

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com As more newspapers shut down and lay off reporters, those of us in PR need to take heed and make a few adjustments. 1) Reporters still on the job have to do more work to make up for those who have been laid off. That means your writing needs to be […]

I’m Trying to Give Away $100 and No One Will Take It

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com I feel like such the Social Media middle man. Check this out… I was giving a keynote speech to 100 executives who belong to an association. The topic was similar to my upcoming topic at the IABC 2009 Conference, which is New Frontiers in Media Training, which will include Social Media Training […]

An April Fool Who Lost His Crisis Communications Plan

Imagine you invest lots of time and money to develop and write your crisis communications plan, then you lose it. It’s happening more often than you might think. To find out how and why this is happening, take a listen to today’s BraudCast.

Spring, Fox News and Panyhose

There are blizzards, floods and tornadoes in the news — all signs of a changing season. But you can never tell what season it is based on how Megan Kelly of Fox News dresses. How you dress when being interviewed on TV is important. News anchors are becoming bad role modes as we hear in […]

BraudCast – A Social Media Breakthrough

A hazard of trying to force Social Media into the workplace is that 1) in some companies, many employees don’t use computers at work and 2) where computers are used, their is a huge demographic divide between the online habits of Baby Boomers and the Gen X-Gen Ys. But in today’s BraudCast, I see a […]

Confessions of a Former Journalist: I’ve Canceled My Daily Newspaper

Yes, it’s true. I’ve canceled my daily newspaper. This was a touch decision to make… especially since I have a degree in Journalism. For details on why, please listen to today’s BraudCast To sign up for a free subscription to BraudCasting please visit http://www.braudcasting.com/Home.html

Gerard’s Top 5 Tips for 2009 – Day 5 – Social Media Training

In 2009 I think you need to introduce Social Media Training where you work. I started teaching Social Media Training for 2 reasons and the classes generally take 2 forms. One form is to teach executives and blog leaders the proper way to communicate in online forums. The second form is to help executives realize […]

Gerard’s Top 5 Tips for 2009 – Day 4 – Social Media Yea or Nay?

Social Media is such a big topic for 2009 that I think I need to cover it in two aspects. Today we’ll look at defining it, determining if and when it should be used, and explore why 2009 may be a great year to add, use or increase your social media. Tomorrow we’ll look at […]

Gerard’s Top 5 Tips for 2009 – Day 3 – Wordsmith Wednesday

For 2009 I encourage you to join the legion of followers who partake in a little something I invented called Wordsmith Wednesday. The reason I invented Wordsmith Wednesday is twofold. First, I hate jargon and there is way too much jargon in organizational communications these days, whether you are with a corporation, government agency or […]

Gerard’s Top 5 Tips for 2009 – Day Two – Can We Talk?

Your executives will be talking more in 2009 and so will your employees. With the economic issues we all face, the media and employees will be asking tough questions… perhaps the toughest your executives have ever been asked. And when times are tough, employee morale can go down and employee talk can turn negative, further […]

Gerard’s Day 1 Tip for 2009 – Dealing with the crisis

Welcome to the New Year. Generally, the New Year is a time of great optimism, but heading into 2009 there is a lot of uncertainty. It’s going to be especially challenging for a lot of people in public relations, so I’ve put together this short 5 part series to provide some guidance to communications professionals […]

Hard to Get News Coverage

by Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Would you believe me if I told you that as you read this more than 2-million U.S. citizens in the nation’s 4th largest city have no water, food, shelter, electricity and other basic human needs – and it is not a big enough story to get news coverage? When I teach […]

Crisis Communications & Hurricane Gustav

If you would like to see my thoughts on how well my hometown and home state did with crisis communications during Hurricane Gustav, please visit my companion blog at: http://blog.crisiscommunicationsplans.com/ If you are with a school or university, you’ll want to read my blog at http://blog.schoolcrisisplan.com/  Many thanks to all of my friends from around the world […]