We have all seen at least a handful of news stories that make us wonder why people make the decisions they do. Even more of us may have considered the idea that “all PR is good PR”.
What do you think? Can all PR eventually lead to a positive result?
Let’s take for instance the 1982 case when seven people died after taking cyanide-laced extra-strength Tylenol. How would you handle this if you were handing PR for this situation?
Johnson & Johnson pulled 31 million bottles of the Tylenol, paused all production and promotion of the product. They worked with the police to help search for the killer and even offered a $100,000 reward. They did eventually reintroduce the Tylenol into the market after offering discounts and adding tamper-resistant wrapping to help prevent further instances of tampering.
Johnson and Johnson made the best of a terrible situation. They lost $100 million when they removed their product from the shelves. However, they gained the trust of the public by handling this situation in a way that made their dedication to the public clear while actively preventing future tragedies like this in their products.
If you were the PR professional in charge when this tragedy struck, would you have handled this situation the same way?
We must be ready for the unexpected at all times. Knowing the facts and being open and honest with the public may save us in the end. By using these concepts, you may even prove that all PR can be good PR!