Why Associations Shouldn’t Be Sidelined By Bad Press
Associations shouldn’t run from negative publicity
Immediately after Duke basketball star Zion Williamson’s Nike shoe ripped apart during a nationally televised game against rival North Carolina, commentators and fans began doling out blame, finding fault with everyone from Nike to the National College Athletic Association.
While Nike released a statement saying they were working to identify the issue, the NCAA has kept mum and Duke has said little. Public relations expert Adele Cehrs says this incident can serve as a teaching moment on how associations should respond when they or even their industry partners face bad press.
“You can come out turning a crisis into an opportunity,” said Cehrs, founder and CEO of public relations and marketing firm Epic. “It is up to you as an association executive to reassure your members that you have your finger on the pulse of what is happening now. Say something like, ‘We’re following this closely, and we’ll let you know if this is something that impacts the industry.’”
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