General Motors conducted traditional media relations following its three recalls in the past week, but the company has avoided digital.
The automaker sent media statements to wire services and print outlets after each recall. GM's communications strategy for recalls is to be transparent without creating confusion or attracting excess attention to the issues, said Alan Adler, manager of news relations at GM. The company did not send a press release or publicize the recalls on its website and social media channels, he added.
“We have to find the balance between informing and not alarming,” Adler said. “We want to make sure we're putting out information to clear up questions, but sometimes we can create confusion by talking more about it.”
GM also reached out to dealerships through its dealer bulletin and will send letters to owners of the recalled vehicles, Adler said. The company's internal team handles communications for recalls.
GM and Isuzu will recall 258,000 sport utility vehicles in the US and Canada due to a potential fire hazard, the companies said Sunday. Last week, GM said it would recall 36,000 Chevrolet Impala police cruisers because of a suspension failure that could cause a driver to lose control. That same week the company announced recalls of 10,315 Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana vans in 20 cold-weather US states and in Canada because of fueling pipe corrosions from road salt.
The spate of recent recalls does not reflect a trend, Adler said. All three recalls were under different stages of investigation and happened to be released around the same time, he explained.