Companies should look to PR to ensure strong characters before crisis hits; just ask Sony and Uber

Brands need PR to solidify high-integrity culturesA brand’s reputation can rise or fall based on how it reacts to unplanned events. Having a crisis plan in place is a good start, but it’s not enough. The right response has to be part of the organization’s character, part of its DNA.

Two companies have hurt themselves and eroded their own reputations with woefully tone-deaf responses to events. As these cases are analyzed in the days and weeks to come, crisis planning will undoubtedly be invoked. In both cases, though, all the planning in the world wouldn’t have stopped these businesses—Uber and Sony—from reacting based on their core nature.

When an unbalanced gunman with a long… Read More »

Friday Wrap #129: High court’s Facebook free speech case, Uber app isn’t malware, Amazon activism

Friday Wrap #129
Flickr photo of wrapping a turkey in bacon courtesy of Jennifer Morrow
A very Happy Thanksgiving to my American readers; I hope you enjoyed warmth, family, and turkey yesterday. Here’s an abbreviated Friday Wrap (since there wasn’t much news published yesterday or today); I’ll be back with a more complete round-up next week. In the meantime, be sure to follow my link blog to stay on top of all the items I collect, from which I select stories for the Wrap and for my weekly podcast.

News

Free speech on Facebook goes to the U.S. Supreme Court—On Monday, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case that will decide when the First… Read More »

Friday Wrap #119: PR Wikipedia guide, bloggers as journalists, TwitPic lives, interactive packaging


Flickr image—“Wrapped Up Dinosaurs”—courtesy of Matt Brown
Welcome to the Friday Wrap, my weekly summary of stuff I’ve found in the last seven days that didn’t grab the big headlines but is still important, interesting, and/or worthwhile for communicators and marketers…and this week ranks up there among the most interesting collections of stories since I started the wrap. I collect these on my link blog, which you’re welcome to follow.

News

IPR releases Professional’s Ultimate Guide to Wikipedia—William Beutler has been one of the key thought leaders when it comes to ethical PR engagement with Wikipedia. His company, Buetler Ink,… Read More »

Friday Wrap #118: More 9/11 abuse, corporate blogging declines, customer service as experience


Flickr image courtesy of Sean MacEntee
Welcome to the Friday Wrap, my weekly summary of stuff I’ve found in the last seven days that didn’t grab the big headlines but is still important, interesting, and/or worthwhile for communicators and marketers. I collect these on my link blog, which you’re welcome to follow.

News

It was 9/11, and marketers were idiots again—When will marketers finally figure out that brands aren’t people and 9/11 tributes won’t be received well? People will see marketing undercurrents in the most respectful messages, which is what happened when White Castle produced a non-salesy image that earned the reply in one… Read More »

IKEA ignores the lessons of Lego and The Ranger Station, sends C&D to a brand ambassador

Sad IKEA HackerWhen I worked for Mattel in the mid-1980s, I spent a fair amount of time with the trademark department, which wanted to make sure that, when I was using a possessive in a company publication, it read Barbie doll’s instead of Barbie’s. Barbie is a trademark and can’t be altered, even for correct punctuation.

These were busy folks. No violation of a Mattel trademark went unchallenged. There was that famous action taken against MCA Records over Aqua’s song, “Barbie Girl.” The company’s philosophy, our trademark lawyer told me, was that letting the smallest of transgressions go opened the door other trademark violations to pass legal… Read More »

Friday Wrap #106: New rules for paid Wikipedia editors and pharmas, Twitter GIFs, social sentiment

A gift-wrapped Second Life store
Second Life image courtesy of Torley
The Friday Wrap is a curated rundown of news, reports and posts from the past week that, while they didn’t go viral or attract much attention, are still interesting and useful for communications professionals. I select Wrap items from my link blog, which you’re welcome to follow.

News

Wikipedia tightens rules against undisclosed editing—In the wake of the multi-agency statement committing PR agencies to playing by Wikipedia’s rules, the online collaborative encyclopedia has changed its terms of use to require disclosure from anyone paid to edit articles. Wikimedia’s top communicator explained,… Read More »

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