3 Steps for Leading Communications in Highly-Regulated Industries

Media in highly-regulated industries

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For clients who operate in highly-regulated industries or are subject to harsh scrutiny, how do we lead communications efforts that convey their full story without being overly defensive?

The unfortunate truth is that many companies in industries like oil and gas production or tobacco and alcohol frequently find themselves in a defensive position, responding to frequent criticism and challenging regulations.

Linhart PR works with clients in highly-regulated industries and provides communication strategies to maximize messaging while minimizing challenges. In their recent blog communication strategy post, they offer three tips for working with clients in challenging business environments or situations:

Prepare a defensive game plan but don’t neglect the offense.

Pressure from the outside may drive organizations to be overly cautious with external communications. While this is not always a poor approach, it may lead to missed opportunities. Communications should aim to improve optics, not simply neutralize them. For example, an organization may respond to critiques by highlighting employee efforts in the community or proactive initiatives developed by the organization.

Create a master communications calendar of milestones, observances and events.

Successful communications don’t just happen. Take a proactive approach to communications strategy by creating a calendar which identifies potential risks and ways to respond. In responses, aim to both address the issue and highlight the client’s story. Share the calendar internally across stakeholders and channels, updating on a monthly or quarterly basis. This will help mobilize ongoing preparation and execution of communication efforts.

Learn the third tip to leading communications in contentious environments on the Linhart PR blog.


Founded in 1996, Linhart PR is a national PR, corporate communications and digital media strategy firm serving clients nationally and internationally. The firm was recognized as one of the best of its size in the nation by PR Week in 2012, was a winner of the 2011 Top Small Company Workplaces award sponsored by Inc. Magazine, and was named 2011 Small Business of the Year from the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce.

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