An organization’s reputation is firmly linked to product brand success, says Weber Shandwick’s January 2012 study, “The Company Behind the Brand: In Reputation We Trust.” The survey of 1,375 consumers, and 474 senior executives in companies with revenue of $500 million or more finds that consumers are wary of buying products from disreputable corporate brands: 40% of consumers do not purchase the product when there is a disconnect between the product brand and the corporate brand (see details in the chart). While this finding should be no surprise to communicators, it is important data to take upstairs to the C-suite to emphasize the importance of reputation protection and enhancement, says Matt Kucharski, executive VP at PR agency Padilla Speer Beardsley. This disconnect has been prevalent in the B2B space, where customers don’t want to buy “bet your company” products and services from a supplier with a shady background, says Kucharski. “Now it’s certainly true in the B2C world as well, driven both by transparency inherent in today’s social media driven society and by the social activism of the Generation Y buyer.
Charting the Industry: Bad Rep Makes Consumers Think Twice
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