2007 Beacon Awards Winners: Crisis Communications


Cable System I

Hurricane Communications Task Force
Cox Communications
Metairie, LA
After Katrina, Cox Communications New Orleans created the Hurricane Communications Task Force to strategize and implement an aggressive, long-term communications campaign that would provide useful and timely information for the benefit of the customer with messaging that was proactive, straightforward, and informative. In 2006, the Rebuilding a Greater New Orleans campaign centered around restoring service, communicating restoration efforts, simplifying the issues and questions, addressing the concerns of customers and supporting the employees in the call center and out in the field. The goal is always to decrease the call volume with effective messaging.

Cable System III

Managing the Aftermath of Hurricane Wilma
Comcast South Florida Region
Miramar, FL
The area damaged by Hurricane Wilma encompassed the entire Comcast South Florida region. The Communications team developed a crisis communications plan to inform the media and customers about the damage that occurred, the repair process, the progression of restoration operations, how other service provider restoration efforts may effect the cable system and how the cable system works. During the post-hurricane crisis mode, Comcast received only one negative article, appeared on television news shows 10 times, highlighted on Spanish and English radio shows 18 times, and mentioned in the area’s major daily newspaper more than 24 times.


Insight’s Migration Tornado
Insight Communications
New York, NY
In May 2006, Insight decided to migrate its broadband backbone off of an AT&T-owned platform and onto its own. As Insight moved into the process, it began to experience network issues that impacted customers’ broadband service. High call volumes debilitated Insight’s call centers and press began to publish negative stories on the crisis. By quickly reacting and providing constant communications to customers, employees and media with CEO Michael Willner as spokesperson, Insight was able to turn around the negative press coverage, keep employees empowered and updated and maintain good relations with customers.