Ties, tools and teamwork turn a sleepy Sunday into double client victories
It’s a good thing none of us decided to have a Sunday Funday this past weekend. Restaurants are now open for in-person dining here in Colorado Springs, Colorado and I am long overdue for a Sunday brunch! I have been missing build-your-own Bloody Mary bars and bottomless mimosas! But had it been one of “those” Sundays I would’ve had a fairly difficult time focusing as we received word via an unexpected morning email that another significant portion of Colorado set was to reopen.
The email was good news: gaming can return to Gilpin County on June 17th. That’s right! Casinos are back and this is great news for two of M&C Communications’ clients: the City of Black Hawk and Monarch Casino Resort Spa.
Keep in mind: Gilpin County has one of the smallest populations in Colorado, but a Wall Street Journal report showed it’s the hardest-hit economy in the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s because the majority of its economy is gaming. The waiver to open was a big deal and the M&C team swung into action.
M&C Communications is here for our clients 24/7. Between our focus on brand protection and crisis communications, we are constantly thinking ahead. That means when the phone rings or the email pings, we already have a client crisis management plan in place and everyone knows what to do. So even on a quiet Sunday, M&C clients can expect the same level of service as any weekday.
The basis of a crisis communications plan is thinking ahead: What might happen? What should we say or not say about it? Who should do the talking? Who fills each role and what are their responsibilities?
For our clients, we think through these questions all the time so we have a crisis plan template engraved in our brains. Less we forget, we have all collectively spent decades in newsrooms working through breaking news and weather. That’s not to say a crisis is always a bad thing-- in this case it was very good thing-- but crisis means action is needed immediately. Does this sound like something you could use in your business?
Let’s walk through how we managed everything on Sunday:
Email arrives (10:50 AM)
We got word from the City of Black Hawk that their casinos could reopen as early as June 17th and a press release with details needed to be distributed ASAP.
Team gameplan (11:30 AM)
After a quick phone call to coordinate our response, we fell into our roles: I craft the first draft of the press release, Sarah Beatty, APR coordinates with the clients on messaging, Diane Mulligan, APR reviews everything for accuracy and strategy, and we all proof each other’s work before it goes out to the client for approval.
In motion (12:30 PM)
I shared the first draft of the City’s press release with Sarah. She began making a few edits when we heard from Monarch Casino Resort Spa that they wanted to craft a statement as well.
Hi, Diane! (1:30 PM)
Our president, Diane Mulligan, APR, wrapped up an appointment and headed into the office to join us. I continued working on other components of the release, like gathering pre-edited b-roll to be used in conjunction with the press release. This is a critical piece of our planning: we have beautiful photos and video edited and ready to go in a Dropbox folder to share with media partners. It helps illustrate the story and earns media coverage when news crews and time are short.
One down, one to go (2:15 PM)
Black Hawk’s release was finished and off to the City for final approval. Sarah and Diane finalized Monarch’s statement while I began uploading Black Hawk’s release to Prezly, the software we use to issue and distribute digital press releases with integrated photos and video to local media outlets. I can save releases and email campaigns as a draft so it’s just one click to publish and send to media partners. Once we had final approval from the City, the release was published and distributed in under a minute.
Rinse and repeat (2:15-5:00 PM)
The Monarch statement came together in much the same way, including individual emails to our curated list of contacts. Like with Black Hawk, the release was issued within 5 minutes after we got the green light.
Moving fast and pushing information out quickly is great, but clients rightfully want to know what impact their announcements (and our work) have in the crowded public debate. That’s where our digital listening software, Meltwater, comes in.
Our pre-built dashboards showed us quickly that our work on Sunday earned:
11 broadcast stories and 12 digital news articles for the City of Black Hawk
2 earned broadcast stories and 2 earned digital news articles for Monarch Casino Resort Spa
25.16 million impressions
A pretty good day at the office, let alone a Sunday. It’s just one example of how M&C Communications uses media ties, powerful tools, and well-oiled teamwork to execute at a high level for our clients. All the plans and tools in the world don’t mean a thing without strong teamwork.
Sometimes on the weekend, when you need something done, you’re met with a voicemail. When you call M&C, you’re met with results.
News breaks on a Sunday morning with significant economic impacts to the City of Black Hawk and Monarch Casino Resort Spa.
Challenge: The City of Black Hawk got word that their casinos had state permission to reopen. The economic impacts gaming has on Colorado made this announcement critically important to get to media in a timely manner.
Plan: Use M&C Communications’ pre-determined roles to effectively execute a press release for the City of Black Hawk and statement for Monarch Casino Resort Spa.
Results: A total of 13 broadcast stories and 14 digital news articles mentions for each client, including media coverage for both Sunday evening into Tuesday morning.
Broadcast impressions ~ 642k
Digital impressions ~ 24.52M
M&C Communications specializes in CBD public relations, crisis communications and media training. Follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter for the very latest on public relations and communications.