MEDIA HANDLING: LANCE ARMSTRONG
Last Sunday, American Lance Armstrong powered to his third successive Tour de France win. Armstrong has overcome cancer and numerous accusations of drug use. For the famed cyclist, drug tests are no big deal and he has passed all of them ( and there have been many ). As a champion of drug-free sports, he has to constantly deal with rumours, tabloid gossip and in-your face accusations about his seemingly stunning run of victories.
Ask yourself if your company can handle a crisis in reputation management. A popular TV star in your media group may be hauled up for illegal drug use; perhaps a substance abuse scandal arising from a senior member of management. If the truth reveals their innocence, even the 'truth' has to be
handled well with the media.
-Do you have a reputation management crisis communications plan?
-Is it frequently updated?
- Do you have partners/ associates/ professionals who can manage a media campaign which is supportive?
- Do you know what to do even if you are in the clear?
If most of your answers are 'no', you might consider trying to take action to prepare yourself for the worst.
As media expert, Rene Henry says: " you'd better have a hose if you want to put out the fire". Be prepared! I'll be covering a list of media handling skills topics and tools in future issues.
Lance Armstrong's sponsor Nike placed an ad featuring him and the caption
" What is Lance On?" Further in the ad, the answer projected was:
" He is on his bike"