Crisis Communication for Local Government

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Crisis Communication for Local Government


The City of Ishpeming, located in Marquette County of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, experienced political, resident, infrastructure, and other crises. The city’s positive aspects were being overshadowed by crises and the City’s subsequent response due to a lack of strategy and processes in communicating these situations to residents was degrading the City’s reputation.


Upon engaging as the City’s strategic communication partner, Siren delivered crisis communication management to multiple situations with responses that were strategic, timely, and transparent. Working across city departments, efforts were driven with stakeholders in mind and proactively addressed issues to distribute a clear message across channels.

In the event of a crisis, Siren utilized a custom protocol to guide the City’s response across all communication channels where residents and visitors access critical information. Media response included developing talking points as needed to guide spokespersons during interviews/press conferences. This also included releasing public statements and proactively sharing information through press releases. This allowed the City to stay ahead of the narrative on breaking news stories and communicate accurate information. Additionally, Siren communicated information to residents by distributing messaging through the City’s owned media channels and initiating open office hours with the Ishpeming City Manager. This community management supported the City in promptly updating residents to build and nurture trust and throw open lines of communication.


From April 2023 to May 2024, Siren’s crisis communication management kept residents and media informed of City events, situations under control, and the City of Ishpeming supported through:

  • Managing 16 media campaigns and conducting a public survey and listening session, thereby enhancing community understanding.
  • Effectively handling major crises, such as a sinkhole incident and road rage stabbing, through proactive and transparent communication.
  • Establishing several owned media resources for the City to directly communicate with residents, including a charter TV channel, an SMS messaging platform, and consistent website updates.

City of Ishpeming