Multilingual Business Communication

April 10, 2009

Blogging in crisis communication

Filed under: crisis communication, Ruth Broekaert — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 6:26 pm

http://rodjohns.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54edf3719883401156e4fb4b9970c-800wi

With the introduction of blogs and other social media companies have to face new challenges if they are to deal with a crisis situation effectively and efficiently.In crisis communication the goals are to maintain a positive image of the company, to present timely information, and to remain accessible. Blogs give the ability to offer updates instantly and to remain accessible. Moreover, you can use a human tone of voice to accommodate the public’s emotional response.

But how do you deal with a blogging community of millions during a crisis? Rumours can spread like wildfire from blogger to blogger, country to country. There are some things you can take into account, because after all, you do want to survive the crisis.

First of all, you should have a crisis communication plan in place. It’s very important for companies to have blogging policies, and certainly, don’t replace your crisis communications plan with blogs. It’s got to be part of the mix.

Secondly, publish facts and only facts. The more information you give, the more you can contain the issue. Don’t let speculation and assumption run wild. Bloggers appreciate openness and giving them all the information is the key.

Thridly, bloggers look for the truth. Answer any questions they might have, post comments on blogs addressing the issue, ask for their opinions and get their insight. Work with them, not against them.

And last but not least, take nothing for granted. Continuously monitor your blog, not only prominent bloggers. When rumours or allegations are completely false this doesn’t mean you can ignore it.

Ruth Broekaert


http://www.prblogger.com/2006/02/blog-crisis-communications/

http://www.fastcompany.com/blog/heath-row/blogs-new-role-crisis-communications

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Talking with (not to) your employees about diversity

Filed under: employee communication, internship, Ruth Broekaert, Uncategorized — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 3:11 pm

A couple of years ago only a few had heard of the term ‘diversity’. More and more managers have come to realize the importance and the benefits of a diverse workforce. Today diversity has truly become a hot topic for internal communication.

But internal communication is often not more than a one way stream of information. A lot of companies are telling their employees not to discriminate, to tolerate differences and so on. This of course is a good thing. But more effective internal communication leaves room for dialogue, and allows top-down and bottom-up communication to complement each other.

The city of Ghent recognizes that internal communication is in fact a two way street. To put this belief into practice the city’s program for diversity and equal opportunities has made a brochure that gives word to the employees. During workshops employees exchanged their experiences with diversity at the workplace. These stories were bundled into a brochure that has been distributed to all city departments. The success of the internal diversity campaign was acknowledged by Federal Minister of Work and Equal Opportunities Joëlle Milquet 1as she rewarded Ghent with the Label Diversity Equality.

https://i2.wp.com/www.werk.belgie.be/uploadedImages/Newsletter/Test/label%20def.JPGhttps://i0.wp.com/www.rollerman.be/images/Stad%20Gent%20kleur.jpgdiversiteit2702072

1 http://www.belg.be/leesmeer.php?x=6498

Ruth Broekaert


Homophobia in sports? Not in Ghent

Filed under: internship, marketing communication, Ruth Broekaert — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 12:52 pm

City marketing is now booming. More and more cities are explicitly positioning themselves amongst their competitors by emphasizing their points of difference. An essential part of city marketing is to clearly state the city’s core values. Even before the city marketing boom, Ghent has always been known for its leading role among others Flemish cities in promoting equal opportunities and diversity. Now, they want to do even more and take it a step further.

That is why the city of Ghent has teamed up with the Holebi Federation to organize the very first Belgian ‘Holebi sportdag’, a sports day for bi-, homo- and heterosexuals. A lot of prominent people from in and around Ghent will be present to sign a charter against homophobia in sports. Why you ask? Of course because doing sports is fun for all! But this is also Ghent’s way of sharing its core values. This sports day is an ideal way to show everyone that there is no need for discrimination or homophobia in the macho world of sports, or anywhere else for that matter.

So sign up for one or more sports activities, from beach mix to highland games, or just come and cheer for the soccer match between the Pink Devils (a gay soccer team) and the soccer team of the Ghent police department. Queer or straight, don’t be square and be there at the Blaarmeersen on the 9th of march!

https://i2.wp.com/www.gent.be/pics/gelijke_kansen/div-color.jpghttps://i0.wp.com/www.rollerman.be/images/Stad%20Gent%20kleur.jpg

Ruth Broekaert

April 2, 2009

How to convince retailers

Filed under: company, Febe Corthals, Hannelore Blomme, marketing communication, Ruth Broekaert, Trui Lagae, Uncategorized — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 12:22 pm

Supermarkets are being offered new products every day. Each product launch, however, entails risks for retailers. Will customers like it? Won’t other products suffer from cannibalization? And where can the new product find a spot in an already crowded shop?

Preparation is key. In order to convince retailers to start selling your new product, you need a combination of well-conceived arguments and tangible proof that the product will sell.

afbeelding12PIDY, an industrial bakery, often launches new pastry products. While creating a sales letter and sales presentation for their new Spoonette, an edible spoon, we tried to find that perfect combination of arguments and evidence to persuade retailers. Three arguments should convince any critic: the original concept, the good quality and the special packaging. It is no coincidence that we have chosen precisely three arguments: this usually sounds more comprehensible and persuasive. To support these arguments, we put forward that the Spoonette was awarded first prize at the SIAL Food Fair in Paris. This evidence gives sales people more credibility and is therefore of vital importance in convincing retailers.

November 2, 2008

What’s in a name?

Filed under: crisis communication, Ruth Broekaert — Tags: , , , , , — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 12:34 pm

The top of the Fortis bank is considering to change the name ‘Fortis’ once the merger with BNP Paribas will have been completed. This was announced last week by top man Peter van de Kerckhove. Up until  now the Fortis-board has insisted that their name shouldn’t be changed because they felt it was still a strong brand, but apparently they have now altered their opinion on the matter. I think this is less of a  home made decision  than they make it seem, considering the  influences of the media.

Next to the overall reporting on the financial crisis, and the role of Fortis therein, several newspaper articles and internet sites have been popping up concerning the strength, or better, the weakness of the brand itself.

Some articles focussed on the discontent of Anderlecht, a Dutch football team which is sponsored by Fortis. Anderlecht’s chairman, Roger vanden Stock announced that the team doesn’t want to play with the brand, nor the logo, on their shirts anymore. They find that the name ‘Fortis’ now has gained a ‘loser’-connotation, which of course isn’t exactly flattering out on the field.

Fortis has also stopped using their slogan ‘Here today… where tomorrow?’ because the slogan has widely been made fun of on the internet. ‘Here today…gone tomorrow!’ has become a well known internet joke.

A particular YouTube-film has also received some media attention during the last couple of days. The film portrays in a humorous way the weak financial state of Fortis and its liquidity issues.

So… what’s in a name? I guess it depends on what’s cooking in the media…

Ruth Broekaert

http://www.nieuwsblad.be/Article/Detail.aspx?ArticleID=DMF25102008_055

http://www.standaard.be/Artikel/Detail.aspx?artikelId=EI22C07O&kanaalid=39

http://www.demorgen.be/dm/nl/996/Economie/article/detail/434523/2008/09/30/Fortis-schrapt-slogan-Here-today-Where-tomorrow.dhtml

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