Why Should Tech Companies Invest in PR in Crisis Times


Sapir Levy


In recent months, Israel’s high-tech industry has faced challenges. After 2021’s record fundraising, the war in Ukraine and global inflation brought euphoria into concern. Within a few weeks, headlines revealed high-tech companies were laying off workers and cutting marketing and advertising budgets.

When companies face a crisis, they almost automatically cut marketing and public relations budgets, believing these are luxuries. There are several problems with this approach. First, PR budget cuts could even worsen the crisis.. Media coverage of these moves can damage the brand. Due to this, companies in this period should invest more time and effort into clarifying their actions. 

Second, while the global economy faces uncertainty, Israel’s high-tech market remains strong and stable in many fields. A start-up’s need for talented employees or Vc investment was not reduced, but rather intensified by the crisis. Even with the recent layoffs, the company is still in need of developers, which can make or break its success. One of the most powerful tools for attracting employees and investors to the company is thorough communication of events, fun days, appointments and so on.

It’s true that not all budgets will allow massive investments in marketing and PR, but you can still get impressive results with reasonable budgets.

A crisis can create a better opportunity for you to deliberate and communicate various moves that are made within the company to the outside, especially when other companies cut their PR budgets. You have a higher chance of being featured in more leading media during such a period. This is from fundraising to initiating a new strategic collaboration or a senior appointment within a company.  In a period like this, the right marketing moves may be able to create more buzz and awareness for certain actions that may look negligible to you.

It is also very critical to invest in to convey messages within the organization in a responsible, coordinated, and uniform manner at times of crisis and uncertainty. During this period, the company should assign a responsibility for explaining the various moves it takes, including layoffs and cutbacks, to a particular team. This team should be able to explain the reasons behind these moves, in a sensitive and honest way. As employees see their friends getting fired, they fear they will also be fired. It sometimes affects both their professional performance and the desire of future candidates to work for you. Taking responsibility and explaining every move and even accompanying the fired employees professionally is essential.

Like other economic crises, the current crisis will pass as well. Taking drastic steps that damage your brand may follow you for a long time. We recommend a balanced approach that looks to the future, which means allocating a specific budget, despite the crisis,  to marketing, internal and external communications, and PR.