Its “Game On Time” for Corporate Brand Messaging Baristas who specialize in Rapid Response & Deployment tactics as corporate brand PR crisis pros are finding hundreds of new job opportunities thanks to President-elect Trump pattern of bullying brands via twitter.
Despite the President-elect’s transition team or Cabinet-level appointees offering any realistic plan or policy playbook that will address the issue of sustainable job creation among middle class and lower income demographics, a post-Christmas prediction by NYT columnist Zach Shonburn suggests that President-elect Donald Trump’s onslaught of gaslight-style twitter attacks aimed at iconic corporate brands as a means to intimidate (aka threaten) them is already proving to be a catalyst for thousands of new jobs that will be created inside of Fortune corporations and across the PR crisis management industry.
And, as corporate executives forward plan best ways to deal with the Donald’s dysfunctional dissing, we’re pleased to announce 3 new pod cast series produced by The JLC Group (subscription required! Or, Just Contact Us for a Free Consultation):
Episode #1: What Brand Managers Need to Do if Dissed by The Donald on Twitter.
Episode #2: The Idiots Guide to Dealing with a Brand Busting Bully…Who Happens to be President of the U.S.A.
Episode #3 Living in the Age of Trump: Top 5 Tricks to the Twitter Trade for PR Crisis Management
Throughout both the primaries and his race against Democratic nominee Hilary Clinton, President-elect Donald Trump has made ‘creating jobs’ a keystone talking point in his mantra to “Make America Great Again.” Aside from what saner minds have dubbed “ridiculous rhetoric” on the part of those who suggest that America is anything but great, the soon-to-be-sworn-in-POTUS remains long on 140-character hyperbole, but arguably short of concrete policy measures that will lead to sustainable job creation among the middle and lower income demographics.
“If you’re a C.M.O., you need to put another filter on your plans,” Mr. Gilman said. “Normally you’d never have to worry about a president singling out your company before. Now you do.”
That said, given Mr. Trump’s Twitter-powered attacks against a growing list of iconic corporate brands, from the makers of Oreos to media industry conglomerate Conde Nast (the owner of Trump target Vanity Fair), to industrial manufacturers of cars, planes and air conditioners to the broad swath of federal government suppliers, we hold one truth to be self-evident: Its “Game On Time” for corporate brand messaging Baristas who specialize in military-style Rapid Response & Deployment tactics. In the world of Trump-powered Surreality TV, Shonburn’s piece (see extract below) conjures up the image of a multi-episode story line for TMC’s Mad Men, entitled “Don Draper Meets His Biggest Match.”
In fact, the number of new job opportunities for fast thinking creative crisis managers who get paid big bucks to help deflect attacks against their clients’ brands is already HUGE. One need merely notice the spike in Brand Manager and PR Crisis Manager Job Opportunities posted across ubiquitous job sites such as Monster.com, Glassdoor.com, Indeed.com, professional networking site LinkedIn.com as well as leading Corporate Marketing and Advertising Industry websites. According to one Trump spokesperson, “The number of new jobs being offered since the election is in the tens of thousands, not including the thousands who have applied for jobs in the new Trump administration!”
While Trump surrogate Kellyanne Conway argues “..the new administration’s long-lasting drought of actual job creation schemes will evolve to concrete solutions, trust us! Added Conway, “..it will be without need to increase the minimum wage guidelines, and without the need to maintain healthcare options initiated under the ACA..” [and apparently will not include the campaign promises of Uncle Sam employing thousands of construction workers to build a wall between the US and Mexico].
Andrew D. Gilman, who has consulted with companies like Johnson & Johnson, General Motors and Pepsi during crises, is telling brands to prepare for Mr. Trump as they would for a natural disaster — an event that is highly unpredictable but poses a big risk if it happens. One contingency is to line up a third-party spokesman who can help if the brand’s image is dinged.
Irrespective of comments from Trump’s sometimes-under-the-bus spokespeople, it is undeniable that Mr. Trump has already inspired many Fortune CEOs (whose peers have been early targets of Trumpwrath) to create special public relations swat teams comprised of experts who are trained to immediately respond to virtually any type of public relations attack against the corporate brand(s) they represent. Those initiatives are manna from heaven for the many middle-aged marketing professionals and grey beard Mad Men (and women) who have been underemployed or otherwise displaced by robotic social media tools during the past number of years.
Don’t take our word for it; below please find extracts from the Dec 25 NYT article “Brands Start Planning for Unexpected Criticism by Trump…
H&R Block’s new advertising campaign is one of the more ambitious in the company’s 62-year history. It hired the actor Jon Hamm for his first on-camera spokesman role, a significant coup. And the company ditched its “Refund Season” slogan in favor of a more aggressive pitch: “Get your taxes won.”
It was August 2015, still the early days of the presidential campaign, when Mr. Trump first mentioned that he hoped to “put H&R Block out of business” with his plan for a simplified tax code. Sixteen months later, the leading tax preparer is still feeling the effects.
As the inauguration nears, Mr. Trump has shown no signs of curbing his willingness to criticize brands that draw his ire, as Boeing, Vanity Fair and Lockheed Martin have realized in recent weeks. The spontaneity of his denunciations — and the speed at which his words travel, particularly on Twitter — has created a sense of unease among marketing executives, who now must be prepared in case Mr. Trump’s insults fly in their direction. Hence, the clear and present need for corporate brand PR crisis pros.
“These are very much uncharted waters for companies,” Tim Calkins, professor of marketing at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, said. “Rarely have we been quite so polarized, and rarely have we had a president who is so quick to call out an attack on perceived threats.”
It is prompting some brands to pre-emptively draft informal contingency plans, and others, like H&R Block, to spend money shoring up their reputation. But one thing that industry analysts and crisis management experts seem to agree on: There is nothing in the handbook that instructs executives on how to handle an overnight Twitter controversy created by the president-elect.
This puts companies — and the executives assigned to handle corporate imaging — in a delicate position. It is hardly advisable, Mr. Calkins said, for a company to challenge the authority of an incoming administration, whether on social media or in a formal ad campaign. But being conciliatory or supportive of a divisive figure like Mr. Trump can have negative consequences as well.
But what if your company is criticized? Scott Farrell, an expert in crisis management and the president of Golin Corporate Communications, said there was no formulaic response.
“The only thing that applies, no matter what the issue, is speed,” Mr. Farrell said. “Slow kills companies fast in a Twitter conversation.”
Some companies should even expect confrontation, he said, especially if they are in an industry that touches one of what Mr. Farrell calls Mr. Trump’s “hot zones,” such as trade, immigration, health care or defense. He is advising clients to thoroughly assess every coming public announcement against what it might trigger.
“These guys should be wearing W.W.T.D. bracelets — What Would Trump Do?” Mr. Farrell said. “If you’re thinking of moving offshore, if you’re thinking of doing a layoff, if you’re thinking of even positive stuff, what would Trump do? Develop a playbook for those contingencies.”
The forceful messaging is a sign of things to come from advertising agencies, said Allen Adamson, a brand strategy consultant.
“From conversations I’ve had, there is a clear sense that in the next administration, companies will have to get their story out much more aggressively and much more quickly than previously,” Mr. Adamson said.
Vanity Fair’s swift response after Mr. Trump reacted to a negative review of a restaurant in one of his buildings by saying the magazine was “dead” could be an example for others to follow, Mr. Farrell said. Its message — including banner ads on its website calling itself “The Magazine Donald Trump Doesn’t Want You to Read” and asking for subscriptions — captured the magazine’s voice and identity. More than 40,000 people signed up for new subscriptions.
“Vanity Fair played that perfectly,” Mr. Farrell said. “‘This was the magazine that Trump doesn’t want you to read.’ I think their response was consistent with the brand’s DNA.”
Still, marketing executives took it as a lesson: Be ready.
For the full article from the NYT, please click here