On Monday night Bachelor Nation watched Bachelorette Becca Kufrin, the 28-year-old public relations executive from Minneapolis, Minnesota, get engaged to Garrett Yrigoyen, a 29-year-old medical sales rep from Reno, Nevada. Many viewers felt that Becca was finally receiving the justice she deserved after a very public breakup last season when her then-fiancé, former bachelor Arie Luyendyk Jr., dumped her for runner up, Lauren Burnham. However, the road to Becca’s happy ending  was far from smooth as she had to weather multiple scandals that broke during the her season involving some of her suitors, including the discovery that Garrett had previously liked a number of hateful and highly inflammatory posts on social media, and the revelation that Lincoln Adim had been convicted of indecent assault and battery for a 2016 incident in which he was accused of groping and assaulting a woman.

Unfortunately, the controversy nearly overshadowed the season premiere and remained a cloud over Garrett throughout the finale. Here are three best practices we drew from Becca and Garrett’s response to his Instagram controversy.

1.       Address the controversy head on

In the age of social media, anything you tweet, Like and share can, and will be used against you. If you do make a misstep (be it intentional or not), the best approach is to take a page out of Garrett’s book by admitting fault and apologizing upfront. Shortly after his Instagram likes went viral, Garrett deleted his Instagram account and released a public apology for his insensitive behavior. After their engagement, the couple proactively addressed the controversy and framed it as a learning lesson, rather than going on the defensive. This approach allowed Becca and Garrett to pre-emptively shut down backlash and leave fans and the press with an air-tight response.

2.       Create a message and stick to it

To prevent the conversation from possibly overshadowing her and Garrett’s happy news, they crafted a single, consistent message that they shared with viewers upfront and then continuously repeated. After issuing an initial statement on the live finale of the Bachelorette / After the Final Rose, the couple continued their message in interviews with popular broadcast and digital outlets such as Variety, E! News and Good Morning America as a united front. By remaining consistent they were able to address and swiftly shut down any questions that arose about the past and redirect any questions that came up about what Garrett’s mistake could mean for their future.

3.       Move on and don’t look back

Since addressing the controversy, Becca and Garrett have moved on. There’s no reason to beat a dead horse, and it’s never a good thing to repeatedly remind others of the controversy. Once you’ve taken the necessary steps to right your wrong(s), it’s best to move forward and not look back.

While fans of the Bachelorette may remain split over whether Becca made the right choice in choosing Garrett as her future husband, what’s not up for debate is the fact that Becca and Garrett’s Instagram scandal was expertly handled.


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