Protecting your brand in today’s highly politicized landscape is a little like tip-toeing through a minefield. Luckily, BrandFoundations and Peppercomm recently teamed up with the Public Relations Society of America to produce a webinar on this topic called “Reputation Management in a Polarized Age.”
In the session, Steve Cody, Co-Founder and CEO of Peppecomm, reviewed the research his firm has conducted with dozens of F500 Chief Marketing and Communications Officers, revealing the trends, unintended consequences and best practices for taking a stand on controversial societal issues. Among their key findings were: (1) the importance of preparation, including robust scenario planning and response testing; (2) that the millennial workforce demands that leaders take a stand on controversial topics; and (3) the need to respond to incidents with facts, consistency and purpose.
Next, BrandFoundations looked at the financial impact taking a stand can have on an organization, whether public or private, profit or non-profit. We also touched on the importance of understanding the character of your audience and how to leverage storytelling and a “higher purpose” to more effectively take stands on controversial issues.
The webinar was incredibly well received by PRSA members: so much so that BrandFoundations and Peppercomm have been invited to deliver the same presentation at InterSections 2018, PRSA’s annual professional development conference to be held in Anaheim, CA August 8-9, 2018.