Public relations and the invasion of Ukraine

However uncomfortable it can make companies to discuss the Russian invasion of Ukraine publicly, it isn’t something they should shy away from doing. It’s a humanitarian disaster and a tragedy – being played out on social media and in the news – and, the impact of the invasion on UK businesses and consumers is far-reaching.

Laura Dale - PR Account Manager

THE IMPACT OF THE RUSSIAN INVASION OF UKRAINE

People all over the world are slowly realising the importance of Ukraine, as a key European exporter of wheat, fertiliser, animal feed and sunflower oil. The war is impacting heavily on the availability and price of these goods, which will in turn impact upon the cost of production in the UK and ultimately see more price rises on the food and products that we buy, like a pint of milk, which could see a 50% price rise.

So what should companies be talking about? They should have clear communications about the war in Ukraine where it impacts on their business and therefore, their customers. Whether it’s the unavailability of goods, rising production costs or an increase on the price of products; clear communication is essential.

Where the impact of the war on a business is undermining their ability to function at their normal level or to provide goods within set timeframes and at a competitive price, then companies need to include the Russian invasion of Ukraine in their crisis communications plans. In every crisis situation, the best way of mitigating potentially damaging news, is to control the media narrative by communicating your message to the media. There are far too many ways that bad news can travel quickly, so being prepared and having clear messaging is essential.

WAR AND SOCIAL MEDIA MESSAGING

We’ve seen the machinery of war on the ground in Ukraine; but, at the same time, social media has become a useful weapon to communicate the devastating impact of the invasion to global audiences and to garner support for a nation under attack.

News outlets across the globe are covering the war on Ukraine and they are offering up opinions on the way in which Russia and Ukraine are using social media channels to communicate with their citizens and with the world.

President Volodymyr Zelensky’s use of selfie videos and communicating on globally used social media platforms has allowed people to evaluate him on their own terms. The clear messaging in his video posts (often taken on his own phone and therefore adding an authenticity to his posts) are a stark contrast with the disorganised and unclear messaging coming from the Russian Government.

Video Credit: The Telegraph 

If you would like to discuss your PR strategy or crisis communications plan, then please do contact us today or find out more about our full range of PR services