A brand’s reputation, though intangible, is one of its most important assets. Brand reputation is closely linked with business success because at the simplest level, customers buy from companies they like. It is therefore important that this reputation be managed well. As many entrepreneurs and CEOs have already discovered, public relations is a powerful tool for reputation management.
PR is often used for reputation management. Reputation management is a corporate tactic which involves shaping the public’s perception of a brand by influencing information about the said brand. It involves promoting content that positively highlights the desired image and includes efforts to mitigate negative reviews. Reputation management can be divided into three main components.
PR plan designed to repair damage should include;
After repair is complete it is time to rebuild. This phase of reputation management should be characterized by intense strategizing. Through consultations with the brand’s teams, PR experts should explore and conceptualize the policy level changes that may be required in order to further propel the brand’s character out of the negative zone into a more positive one.
The recuperating process may take months or years depending on the magnitude of the hurdle being negotiated. As the final step in the brand reputation management process, it is also the one that is most lasting. Once rebuilding has been successfully accomplished the brand reputation must be maintained. Some elements of the recuperating phase include:
Establish and Maintain a Positive Public Image
But reputation management extends beyond corrective measures on the heels of undesirable incidents. Brands should prioritize reputation management before a crisis occurs. In fact there should be a cyclical or continuous approach to reputation management characterized by data collection, evaluation and strategy development. Brands that have powerful positive images from the outset are in a better position to recover from negative incidents than those without.
Get Ahead of Negative News
A powerful reputation management tool is pre-emptive action. Quick action can help to reduce the impact that a negative event might have on a brand’s character. It is always recommended that brands act as speedily as they can to address publicity nightmares. In fact if the brand can get in front of the issue and disclose the blunder themselves reputation management becomes much easier. Getting ahead of negative news gives the brand the advantage of being able to control the narrative. It also helps to give the impression that the brand is honest with its target audience and a mature corporate citizen.
Brands can either buckle under the pressure or rise renewed from publicity blunders. Professional reputation management can be the difference between the two.
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