Issues Manaement Communication | Energy
In 2012, the east coast of the United States was hit with a series of devastating weather events, including Superstorm Sandy, multiple ice storms and other winter weather issues. The cascading series of storms resulted in massive amounts of power outages throughout the coastal region. These outages put a tremendous amount of pressure from the public/customers, media members and government officials one of the main electric utilities in the area. The company was inundated with complaints about outages, compounded by a lack of cohesive communication to explain the situation and update customers accordingly.
Following restoration efforts after the storm, Wixted & Company worked with the utility to craft and deliver a comprehensive communication strategy focused on elevating the company’s brand and reputation. Our layered approach included working with their communications team to develop strategic communication for “blue sky” days to grow the utility’s reputation as a dependable community partner.
We aided their team by developing a social media strategy and some high-level content to highlight the professionalism and dedication of team members, which helped establish the social channels as the go-to source for information related to outages.
Wixted & Company led storm response training for leadership from across the utility’s partners to enhance the communication response time and effectiveness during challenging times. We worked with the corporate communications team to identify and train those communications professionals on the front lines, including leadership, to strengthen and hone their skills and build their confidence.
Weather systems are a challenge for every utility. While nothing can be done to change or control nature, our work with the utility allowed them to be more effective with their communication during challenging times – and to elevate their standing as a dedicated community partner 365 days a year. The goodwill built from these efforts, when there was no active issue, positioned them well for continued success when facing future weather events that impacted service, customer service issues and other situations.