Flexibility is key to successfully negotiating the multiple crises the PR industry faces, Rosecomm president and CEO Rosemary Ostmann tells Doug Simon during the latest video interview in the “PR’s Top Pros Talk” series.

With the communications landscape impacted by COVID-19, racial tension and the upcoming presidential election, Ostmann says developing and maintaining flexibility requires listening to what clients have to to say about these hot-button issues.

But it’s not enough to simply respond to what’s happening in the world today. Ostmann stresses that it’s also important to “be true to your brand.” Organizations that do not have a history of speaking out should proceed with caution, she says.

“For all brands it is right to have a voice now,” Ostmann notes, but she adds that “trying to figure out what is that voice, what are we comfortable with, what is on brand” presents a challenge. “It’s really easy to make a mistake right now.”

Two areas that Rosecomm specializes in—health care and education—are also addressed in the interview.

Health care brands and organizations, Ostmann says, must play a role in “educating people about the pandemic and also in flattening the curve of the pandemic.” To do that, credibility is essential. She tells Simon that before sharing information, communicators need to be 100 percent sure they have the facts, along with the expertise to deliver them.

For educational organizations to respond to the hurdles presented by online learning, she says, they need to balance their communications between telling the “positive stories and reasons to be hopeful” with a clear-eyed view of the difficulties ahead.

All of the interviews in the “PR's Top Pros Talk” series can be seen here.

Interested in taking part? Contact Doug Simon at [email protected]

D S Simon Media helps clients get their stories on television through satellite media tours and by producing and distributing content to the media. The company also produces live social media events.