We could not help but notice how the Swine Flu changed to the H1N1 Virus. The story is an interesting one of how the flu came about from a pig however the name changed almost overnight once it hit mass media. From a marketing perspective using the word Swine can cause a loss in revenue and possibly put nice size dent in the economy. Using the word Swine which is another name for Pork affects the industries that directly and indirectly benefit from the mass production of pork products.
Imagine what would happen if people all together decided not to purchase pork or the bi-products of it. Items such as crayons, glue, Fertilizers, Water Filters, rubber products, etc. not being consumed would result in possible layoffs and foreclosures. If you can recall the recent peanut butter crisis, an entire plant was shut down and hundreds of people layed off.
Once the term Swine Flu lifted its ugly head consumers immediately began to subconsciously blame the pork producers and those affiliated with them. The consumers became the victim of this animal and its handlers. Once the H1N1 was coined as the new name it became a neutral issue and both the consumer and the pork producers became the victim which at that point help form a relationship of us (consumers and pork handlers) against them (the virus).
Businesses can learn a lot from Crisis Marketing or PR. If your business has any chance of growth you will go through times where you will have to restructure a crisis situation and “Give People a Reason to Talk about You“.