Education Marketing StrategyEducation Public Relation

Balancing Coverage Through Strategic Communication and Media Relations — Case Study

By December 11, 2015October 11th, 2017No Comments

The Situation: A client that develops and administers assessments to school systems sought to maintain its credibility after technical issues disrupted assessments. CB&A implemented strategic messaging, media training and media relations to neutralize widespread negative coverage of the client.

The Results: CB&A and the client were able to increase communication with media and other audiences in a sincere, straightforward manner. Through participation in the public conversation, the campaign normalized news coverage.

Planning & Execution:

CB&A partnered with the client to establish a communication campaign that would manage the client’s reputation in media coverage. The plan focused on three key aspects:

  • Timely public communication (regular statements, media interviews, etc.)
  • Acknowledgement of issues, communication of remedies
  • Communication about assessment success stories

CB&A met the goals of the campaign by developing strategic messaging, preparing a media training session and manual, fielding requests from journalists and monitoring coverage 24/7.


Through CB&A’s research and expertise, the client was able to establish proactive, matter-of-fact communication with media. The campaign ultimately improved media coverage for the client.

The coverage sentiment for the client shifted from 89 percent negative, 11 percent neutral and 0 percent positive to 50 percent negative, 23 percent neutral and 27 percent positive. Additionally, all media queries, including those sent on nights and weekends, received a reply within 24 hours. By influencing public opinion, via the Fourth Estate, CB&A helped the client retain customers during a difficult time. This campaign earned a PRSA Alchemy Award of Excellence.