As I am tying this, I am currently waiting for my flight to head to Europe, particularly Spain. You might be thinking – wait, what? You were just in Spain in June for a conference!
That’s correct, and now I’m heading back to another one. I have the chance to present research I worked on with fellow friends and colleagues (Sabrina and Kristin) at the upcoming EUPRERA 2013 Congress in Barcelona, Spain. I am very excited about this wonderful opportunity to share our research with fellow PR colleagues.
The focus of our research looks at whether or not crisis messages and best practices appear the same based on the situation (ex. natural disaster versus man-made crisis) on social media through implementing a value model methodology from systems engineering.
However, like social media and crisis communications, is not just something we of course use here in the US. What is great about this research is the fact that it can be tailored to the particular platform focused in the given crisis situation and can be tailored.
The fact the theme for the congress this year is looking at cultural identity and strategic public relations is key. Each social media community online has a specific identity they are trying to initiate, and certain values, attributes, and characteristics are expected by those who are part of this community. In a moment of crisis, this definitely comes into play for the PR professional.
We have to be strategic, insightful, and systematic on how we go about in communicating our crisis messages to make sure we are addressing the fundamental principles of effective crisis communications, but also be aware that based on the platform and situation, we have to adjust accordingly.
This research project was a lot of fun to work on with both Kristin and Sabrina. Sabrina and I come more from a PR background for research, and Kristin is from systems engineering of course. We see this research to be both theoretically appropriate as well as being used by practitioners. We are still fine tuning the model – this is what research is all about – and we hope to continue to explore this model further in future projects and studies.
If you would be interested in a copy of the paper, please let me know and would be happy to share it with you! Have a great day!