reputation




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August 28, 2012

6 Myths of Crisis Management PR

by: in: communications, crisis management, imPRessions, reputation

In the past several weeks, brands from Burger King and Penn State to Chick-fil-A and CelebBoutique have grappled with serious reputational threats.  These days, it’s almost routine for communications pros to be managing some kind of potential crisis situation along with proactive PR programs. Yet true “crisis management” is probably a misnomer.  Though there are…
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August 24, 2012

Armstrong’s Crisis PR Is In Fighting Form

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

As evidence that he used performance-enhancing substances has gained traction over the years, cyclist Lance Armstrong always managed to stay out in front, avoiding major reputation damage. Until now. But even now, he may be down, but he’s not out. As he threw in the towel, announcing that he’d no longer contest the US Anti-Doping…
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July 17, 2012

Can Penn State’s Reputation Be Saved?

by: in: Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

Among the casualties of the Penn State sexual abuse coverup were the personal reputations of university officials, including the late football coach and sports icon Joe Paterno. Paterno, Spanier, Curley, Schultz and others will be forever linked to the efforts to minimize and conceal shocking crimes against children. (Who can forget the email in which…
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June 28, 2012

Career-Building PR Techniques: How To Get ZMOT On Your Side

by: in: branding, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, marketing, public relations, reputation, social media

Marketers like to talk about the Zero Moment of Truth, or ZMOT, for a product or brand. Loosely defined as the moment when a prospective buyer looks for online reviews and recommendations for a product, ZMOT follows the P&G tenets of the “first moment of truth,” when a customer chooses a product on the store…
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June 12, 2012

2012 Commencement Wisdom For New (And Old) Graduates

by: in: communications, creativity, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

There’s just something about graduation season. Even those of us whose commencements are far in the past can catch some fresh inspiration from the wisdom dispensed at the annual college rites. And for the speakers, it’s often a strategic PR move where boldfaced names look to be humorous, colorful, and newsworthy. Here’s a recap of…
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June 6, 2012

Jason Alexander’s Apology Is A PR Homerun

by: in: celebrity, communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

We communications pros like to use words like authenticity, transparency, and honesty. Too often, they’re empty cliches. But every now and then, they jump out at you. Take the latest public apology to go viral. I don’t know anything about cricket, so when I read that actor Jason Alexander had called the game “gay” in…
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May 21, 2012

Jamie Dimon’s Apology Tour: Is It Enough?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, leadership, public relations, reputation

JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon’s apology to shareholders last week managed to fulfill at least three prerequisites for a public mea culpa. It was swift, it was direct, and the CEO took responsibility for the bank’s $3 billion trading loss in a hedge gone wrong. Dimon used words like “egregious,” “sloppy,” “stupid,” and “self-inflicted.”…
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May 14, 2012

Crisis Management: When The Crisis Is The CEO

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, leadership, public relations, reputation

  It’s hard out there for a CEO. Recently, we witnessed a week’s worth of drip-drip-drip coverage about Yahoo chief Scott Thompson’s resume. The gaffe culminated in Thompson’s resignation after only four months on the job. But the controversy, on the surface, wasn’t about whether he’d faked an advanced degree, or falsely claimed Ivy League…
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April 27, 2012

How Not To Apologize: A Lesson In “Apology PR”

by: in: Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

The past two weeks have seen a cascade of misdeeds to fascinate apology-watchers like me. Where to begin? There’s the mushrooming scandal over the GSA’s $820,000 taxpayer-funded junket to Las Vegas in 2010. And the even seamier “hookergate” involving members of the Secret Service (though at least they were cost-conscious in their indiscretion!) There was…
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April 11, 2012

PR Move of the Week: Hillary Clinton (Hillz)

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

Hillary has become cool. That’s right, the Hillary Clinton who struggled through grueling Democratic primaries in 2008, only lose the ultimate prize to the maddeningly unruffled new guy, seems to be having the last laugh. And we thought Obama was the cool one. It started when two Hillary fans, PR specialists Stacy Lambe and Adam…
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March 29, 2012

JetBlue’s Response to Pilot Breakdown: Light On Crisis PR Strategy?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

All airlines are prone to rough PR weather, but JetBlue seems to have more than its share. Maybe it’s because during a time of rapidly deteriorating expectations, many of us still expect more of JetBlue. It’s that rare industry bird, the customer-friendly airline. An oxymoron. So when it goes off-course, that’s news. There was the…
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March 12, 2012

PR Disaster Averted: 7 Cases of Good Crisis Management

by: in: Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

PR agency pundits and brand watchers love to create “best and worst” lists around marketing and communications developments.  The emphasis usually falls on the “worsts” – like the most badly handled crisis situations, mangled cover-ups, or PR stunts that backfired. It’s easy to criticize, but what about giving credit for crises averted or PR battles…
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March 7, 2012

What’s In A (Brand) Nickname?

by: in: advertising, branding, communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

Al Ries’ recent column in AdAge, “When It Comes To Names, Corporations Just Aren’t People” got me thinking about the PR of brand nicknames. Corporations may not be people, but their brands can get pretty darn close. That’s why “pet” names for products and companies can be powerful, from the classic shorthanders like Coke and…
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February 17, 2012

Goldman Sachs CEO Embraces Marriage Equality: A Good PR Move?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

  The Human Rights Campaign’s push for marriage equality follows the PR-savvy methods of similar campaigns, like the It Gets Better project. Boldfaced names from politics, sports, and entertainment star in video testimonials to express support for the right to marry, regardless of gender. The latest videos feature Anna Wintour, the Reverend Al Sharpton, and Lloyd Blankfein….
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February 3, 2012

Can Komen Recover From Its PR Disaster?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

Susan G. Komen For the Cure, the force behind the ubiquitous pink breast-cancer ribbon, had a lot of people seeing red this week. After withering social criticism and fierce pressure from influentials, Komen reversed its controversial decision to defund Planned Parenthood. But a formidable symbol of grassroots activism built over 30 years has taken a…
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January 20, 2012

Paula Deen’s Diabetes Disclosure: A Recipe for Poor PR?

by: in: branding, communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

  As the queen of “comfort cuisine,” Paula Deen has been a favorite among many members of my family, all of whom live in Georgia or the Carolinas. I’ve admired Paula for her unapologetic taste for indulgence, and for her Southern fried authenticity and down home charm. I’ve never even watched her show, yet I…
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January 16, 2012

Racist Receipts and Other PR Blunders

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

Is any industry more challenging than retail? Not only is the business tough, but your employees are your brand. And those employees are notoriously transient and often underpaid, overworked, and just plain bored. And sometimes they do things that are just plain stupid. It takes only one misstep, powered by social media, to create a…
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January 5, 2012

Fake Twitter Accounts: The Ultimate Status Symbol?

by: in: celebrity, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

Wendi, we hardly knew ye. The all-too-brief period in which Mrs. Rupert Murdoch took to Twitter was thrilling for Murdoch-watchers, social media pros, and PR  types. It seemed another example of the faux-democratizing power of the social Web. It also showed the cleverness of Ms. Deng, and her uncanny ability to humanize her much-reviled husband….
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December 29, 2011

The Top Ten PR Blunders of 2011

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

When a serious setback or crisis occurs, not even the most talented PR pro can make it go away. Yet, a poor response invites reputation damage, while proper handling can help mitigate or limit it. Here’s my “Top 10” list, from a communications perspective, of the most badly handled public situations of the year. 10.  Governor…
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December 22, 2011

Well-Handled: FedEx Delivers on “Apology PR”

by: in: branding, communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

  Talk about heavy lifting. Pity the communications pros at FedEx. At the height of the holiday season, when the company wants to focus on its state-of-the-art technology and customer service prowess, it’s the recipient of an unwelcome holiday gift – a viral video that threatens real damage to its brand. One careless employee and 20 seconds –…
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December 12, 2011

Isn’t It Ironic? Lowe’s Apology Triggers PR Damage

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

The backlash came in a flood, like a burst pipe. The move by Lowe’s to drop its ad support for the TLC show “All-American Muslim” after pressure from a conservative Christian group may leave its reputation in serious need of repair. But, to me, it reads like an O. Henry story where good intentions go awry, and…
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November 14, 2011

When PR and Legal Strategies Clash

by: in: Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

A recent episode of “The Good Wife” offers a highly entertaining look at crisis management inside a law firm and the tension between PR advice and legal counsel. A strategy session for a client whose tainted cheese has sickened dozens of schoolchildren erupts in war between the attorney, who wants to stonewall media calls, and a $60,000-a-month spinmeister (played to…
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November 9, 2011

Un-Happy Valley: Penn State’s Massive PR Fumble

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

“… I wish to say that Tim Curley and Gary Schultz have my unconditional support. I have known and worked daily with Tim and Gary for more than 16 years. I have complete confidence in how they have handled the allegations about a former University employee.  Tim Curley and Gary Schultz operate at the highest…
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October 21, 2011

How To Turn Bad Publicity Into Good PR

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

There are those who think any PR is good PR, but let’s face it, sometimes it’s just plain bad. Faced with withering reviews for its plan to separate its DVD and streaming businesses into two distinct units, Netflix has canceled Qwikster. This latest plot twist is a bit reminiscent of Gap’s unveiling of that infamous new…
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July 6, 2011

Recipe For A Twitter Fail: Was Entenmann’s #Guilty of Hashtag Hijacking?

by: in: Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

Call it a half-baked attempt to be topical…or perhaps, just a mistake. As Twitter erupted following the surprise guilty verdict in the Casey Anthony murder trial, Entenmann’s adopted the rapidly trending #notguilty hashtag to tweet a whimsical update about “eating all the tasty treats you want.” The tweet lasted only minutes. Someone realized the juxtaposition wasn’t…
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