There are some who believe bad PR only comes from failed or irresponsibly planned actions of public relation specialists. It actually also comes from having no PR to handle negativity associated with a certain company. There’s also this ongoing belief that not all companies need PR, because they see PR as just some people trying to get stories into the newspapers.
Yet here’s the example revealing how PR can help you better communicate with existing and prospect customers. Let’s take a construction company. Negotiations are mostly based on different things than the number of articles on the papers. Old projects are analyzed, those hiring them want to know if they work effectively, if they finish on time and if they can adapt to new challenges throughout a project.
There’s this construction company renovating an underground passage placed in the very heart of Bucharest. It leads to the subway station and it’s the only way to get from one side to another of this huge crossroad. I’ve read quite a few blog posts on how they never work. People have been passing by at different hours and there’s never someone working there.
Piata Universitatii, Bucharest City Center, Construction Site Location
The underground passage went from fast foods, shops and book stores to dust, garbage and extremely bad smells. Now, if they actually don’t do the work because they’re lazy, then no PR expert in the world can help them on the long run. Even if the crisis is solved in a positive manner, they will surely mess up the next project.
But what if they’re not working because they can’t through no fault of their own? Those hiring them might not have kept their end of the bargain, they might need to work at night to avoid making people walk in a cloud of dust, they might be waiting for some structure studies or some architect’s design first.
In such a case, a PR person could find a low budget solution: some announcements in the passage stating the reason, giving some info on when work will start and when the project would be finished. Otherwise, the main opinion is that the construction company is just another one getting a huge amount of money to basically do nothing most of the time.
As the name of the company in charge of the project needs to be displayed on the construction site, all those passing thorough the center of Bucharest will associate their name with laziness, falling behind with projects and other negative aspects. Why would a company allow something like that to happen? It does take an enormous amount of money and quite some time to put a positive twist on such an image disaster.