Another Crisis Brewing for Elon Musk and Tesla- How to Respond

Most people know Elon Musk is controversial but he’s close to igniting a new crisis with one of his most passionate and loyal groups of Tesla followers.

I wrote an article in Forbes a few years ago that detailed warning signs your brand is about to blow up and a crisis is emerging. If ignored, your brand becomes ripe for a crisis. This latest media coverage on Tesla is a clear warning sign to their stock owners who worry about pricing pressures and future EV sales.

Tesla owners are one of the few remaining groups who have stuck alongside Musk even after his divisive tweets, controversial statements and media comments. The media is now beginning to circle around Teslas that can’t charge in the cold, leaving drivers stranded. Chicago media was all over this story last week, calling Tesla charging stations “car graveyards.”

Another article in the global publication, The Express, is taking this communications crisis to a higher level. The story interviewed angry drivers who had to wait in 45-minute lines in Brooklyn and Queens to charge their vehicles because of a charging station shortage.

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Crisis Advice – Release all the Bad News or Drip, Drip, Drip

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in a tough crisis situation. Every day bad news seems to come up, keeping his sexual harassment allegations in the news cycle.

Cuomo tried to apologize but he broke every mistake I laid out in my Forbes editorial – How to Apologize when the Media is Listening. If you read that article, you can learn how to authentically apologize for your mistakes.

So how do you control negative news once it’s out? And when you know more bad news is coming, how do you release it?

The end-game strategy of crisis communications is to get out of the news as quickly as possible. You don’t want any story to linger because as new developments unfold, it keeps your story in the news cycle.

News is always about advancing a story. During my time as Executive Producer with NBC, we would frequently see a story in the morning’s New York Post or Daily News – and try to figure out how to advance it.

Every day new information comes out, the more chances your negative story remains in the news.

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