Reputation

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The Weight of a Word: Rebranded as WW, Weight Watchers Learns a Heavy PR Lesson

September 25th, 2018 by

Successful writers and PR pros alike remember that the words we use carry a weight, a positive or negative connotation, and choosing what word to use can make or break your brand. Weight Watchers demonstrated an understanding of this on Monday when it announced that it was rebranding as WW, or “wellness that works,” forgoing the 55-year old brand name in favor of shifting the focus away from simple dieting to highlight the brand’s new emphasis on sustainable wellness products and initiatives.

Amidst New Accusations of Gender Bias, Facebook Ads are Once Again the Culprit

September 19th, 2018 by

All recent accusations of bias have one thing in common, the same thing that Facebook has dodged questions of reform or regulation over and generally failed to directly address: its proprietary, micro-targeting ad platform. It was this ad platform that allowed the Russians to pay for propaganda in rubles, it was this ad platform that allowed Cambridge Analytica to manipulate its third-party audience categories, and it was this ad platform that has brought the latest accusations of gender bias back to Facebook.

Diversity at the Emmys: Actors of Color Snubbed Despite Assurances of Inclusion

September 18th, 2018 by

The 70th annual Primetime Emmy awards talked the talk about increasing diversity on television and Hollywood at large, but did not walk the walk. Despite numerous jokes and skits poking fun at the traditional snubbing of people of color in the entertainment industry, and the most diverse group of nominees in the history of the program, 22 of the 26 award winners were white.

Can a Good Endorsement be Bad PR? The New Apple Watch May Save Lives, But It’ll Cost You

September 17th, 2018 by

A good endorsement from the FDA could actually turn out to be bad PR for Apple, a company known to offer its newest proprietary tech at premium prices, as people who need the tech might not be able to afford it. The issue of life-saving resources that are unaffordable to many recalls several recent instances when pharmaceutical companies have made headlines for raising the price of their medications to such exorbitant numbers that those without insurance deemed the gouging to be a death sentence.

Is Mueller’s Silence His PR Lesson?

September 14th, 2018 by

Considering how often President Trump attacks him, special counsel Robert Mueller seems to be ignoring the PR maxim that if you don’t write your own narrative, someone else will do it for you. On the other hand, Mueller might prefer to allow the 30+ indictments he’s produced to do the talking for him.

A Decade After Our Economy Crashed, Financial PR Still Has a Transparency Problem

September 13th, 2018 by

Goldman Sachs offered a blanket denial to the reporting from a story published earlier this week in the New York Times, which accuses Goldman of dismissing claims from a top executive who used the firm’s own whistleblower hotline to call out a litany of ethical violations he saw from the inside. Goldman’s statements on the matter call to question why transparency and accountability remain so difficult for the bank to put into practice, and its statements similarly raise more questions.

The Power of a Letter: IHOP’s Brief Rebrand Kept Conversation Cooking

September 11th, 2018 by

It was a quick switch. IHOP, a household name, became IHOb. Not long after, the ubiquitous pancake house went back to its roots. It was stunt perhaps worth replicating, because a few months later, people are… Continued

Polling on Racial Discrimination Supports Nike Just Doing It

September 7th, 2018 by

While some of the initial figures for Nike’s latest iteration of the Just Do It effort with Colin Kaepernick are mixed so far, the brand likely weighed potential costs and benefits before embarking on the campaign. Despite protests against the brand this week, Nike knew what it was doing when it entered the conversation on racial discrimination. It’s important to understand why.

PR Lessons from Steve Bannon’s Dis-Invitation to the New Yorker Festival

September 4th, 2018 by

It may be difficult to separate personal feelings from professional ones when considering the story of Stephen Bannon, the former Trump White House strategist, being dis-invited to appear at the New Yorker Festival next month. Nevertheless, the incident provides several timely lessons for communicators in these uncertain times.

Why Nike Just Did It: Kaepernick’s New Deal is Perfect Revisionist PR

September 4th, 2018 by

This past Labor Day, Nike announced Colin Kaepernick as the main face for the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” campaign. Heaps of praise, and condemnation, were immediate. #BoycottNike continues to trend, as conservatives across the country destroy the Nike goods they paid good money for in protest, and Nike shares took a slight dip.