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10 PR Nightmares Every Reputation Management Consultant Dreams Of

Your brand’s nightmares are the happy dreams of reputation management companies (like mine). I saw a few posts by "small time" PR people talking about nightmares like sending a media pitch to the wrong mailing list,  or being ousted in the news for a bigger story.

These are small problems, that "real" PR firms don’t worry about.  You want REAL nightmares, these are real nightmares:

  1. Your customer’s product was recalled because the off shore manufacturer used a heavy metal in the construction, so it is labeled as toxic.
  2. An executive of the company had a domestic dispute, a hooker, a DUI, or other legal issue that is about to hit the press.
  3. A disgruntled employee released internal emails that don’t paint the company in a good light.
  4. Your "Expensive PR Stunt" results in the police showing up and arresting people.
  5. Hackers put the usernames and passwords of every registered user of your site on Bit Torrent.
  6. The first page of results for the company’s brand is filled with "is a Scam" and "Rip Off" articles.
  7. An executive made a racist or sexist remark and the sound byte hit the Internet.
  8. Malware infects your Server and your site is redirected to a porn site and delisted by Google.
  9. Turns out the product you just launched shares a name with an Urban Dictionary entry for a sexual act involving feces.
  10. I would tell you, but you’d never sleep again.

These are all real issues that www.blackwaterops.com has resolved for clients.  So while your PR person lists nightmares like "No cellphone service", we worry about things like how to put a less than flattering Wall Street Journal article on the 10th page of search results.