RIM's litigation and media strategy

RIM, the makers of the Blackberry, are undoubtedly pursuing a multi-faceted strategy In their ongoing legal battle with US patent holding company NTP. The much smaller US company, however, seems to winning the parallel public relations war. Earlier this week RIM's co-CEO, Jim Balsillie, launched a broadside against NTP - on the pages of the WSJ. At least in the Canadian markets, the momentum from this move was reinforced by the revelation that the US Patent Office was fast tracking its review of NTP's erstwhile patents. Still, Mark Evans rightly calls out RIM for implying negative media coverage prompted RIM's lowered fourth quarter forecasts.

A considered media relations approach is an important component of every litigation strategy - just as it should be part of your analyst relations efforts. Reporters can only amplify existing murmurs and concerns - doubts about your ongoing profitability originally expressed by your customers and the analysts tracking your company.

If the media is playing up the potentially devastating implications of losing your case, shouldn't your media relations efforts strive to reassure customers, analysts and the media?

(copy of Balsillie's op/ed found on Blackberrycool)