If you follow the world of video games like I do, you’re familiar with Electronic Arts (EA), a wildly successful, publically traded, developer/publisher whose industry prominence has earned them exclusive licenses to some of the world’s biggest brands, including the NFL, UFC, and Star Wars. EA is no stranger to controversy, be it a conflict over pricing or their purchase of smaller development talent. However, in late 2017, the company’s stock took a $3 billion hit after their latest controversy became a full-blown PR crisis, prompting legislative action that equated EA’s business practices to gambling, in addition to a major drop in consumer sales.
While the situation now stands as a shining example of a communication failure, the truth is, things should never have spiraled out of control. Hidden within this PR nightmare are lessons to be learned for communication professionals in every industry on how to better manage a crisis.