June 24th, 2020

A deadly virus that continues to spread globally, civil unrest and protests in major cities worldwide, calls for defunding police departments, record unemployment and elections only a few months away have made crisis communications a way of life for professional communicators. Nearly every day, companies large and small must react – and try to stay ahead of – new crises that have not been experienced before.

The old saying, “Think Global, Act Local,” also is now part of the equation, as events in Seattle, Minneapolis and Atlanta, create local crises in the midst of national or universal health catastrophes and social confrontations – let alone politics.

A Target has been a target in Minneapolis, with protesters turning violent against the giant box store based on both hiring practices and its affiliation with the local police department. Meanwhile, when many Americans think of Wendy’s, they see a burning Atlanta restaurant as a racial flashpoint – no one is thinking of hamburgers.

Target successfully pinpointed its image crisis as local, as highlighted by Lightbox Search results. Lightbox Search, which provides an overview of reputation-critical Google search results and the key metrics around those searches, was put to work to view how Target’s results appeared in a number of key markets, including the Minneapolis flashpoint.

Lightbox analysis from June 8 and June 17 show that the national reputation of Target remained intact, but search results in Minneapolis were substantially negative. Lightbox’s proprietary scoring system rated the Minneapolis search at negative 18 on June 8, but it recovered to very positive national numbers the following week. A score of 75 or above is considered good; Lightbox Search scores range from +100 to -100.

Wendy’s has suffered a greater national hit to its reputation, though the events of June 12 are still raw. Analysis of Lightbox Search scores over a 48-hour period shows a negligible improvement for Wendy’s, but exceedingly negative scores in Atlanta persist as do generally low numbers on a national basis. Still, the 48-hour trend shows that the Wendy’s corporate communications team continues its attempts to mitigate the online damage.

Results for both organizations underscore the importance of taking control of the online narrative on a local, regional or national basis. 

Lightbox Search was created to help organizations, corporations, celebrities, political candidates and others to navigate their online reputations in good times and bad. The tech platform is also becoming an integral part of crisis communication playbooks for many organizations.

Google search results are often the first impression your potential visitor, customer, voter or investor sees. Identifying all risks and opportunities associated with Google search is no longer a luxury, but an imperative to help ensure your client’s reputation remains strong.

Furthermore, it is also critical to understand, and track, local results on a case-by-case basis. Franchises, multi-location corporations and organizations with local chapters are key examples of how professional communicators must know what local or regional audiences experience when they check your firm or organization on their phone or computer. 

From large national chains to high-profile B2Bs and consumer outlets to high-profile B2B organizations, Lightbox Search is the easiest and most cost-effective tool to ensure digital profiles you care about remain protected.

So what might be in front of your nose on your phone or laptop might be quite different 3,000 miles away, or even across town. Knowledge is power. Lightbox Search offers that knowledge.

Interested in taking a closer look? Request a complimentary analysis of your organization’s search results now.