What’s Your Reputation Worth?

Erik Bernstein crisis communications, crisis management, crisis preparation, Crisis Prevention, crisis public relations, Crisis Response, public relations, reputation management 2 Comments

Putting a price on complacence

Mismanaging your reputation is almost guaranteed to cost big bucks, yet even multi-billion dollar organizations tend to gloss over this crucial part of crisis management.

The main reason corporate execs offer is that they believe the results of an investment in reputation management “can’t be quantified”. Well, here’s some quantification for you, from an article by Issue Outcomes’ Tony Jacques titled, “When Share Price Puts a Value on Brand Reputation:”

Cause and effect is sometimes hard to assess when it comes to the share market, but the cost of mismanagement can be brutal. For example, Google has long been one of the world’s most valuable brands (ranked fourth in the latest Interbrand rankings), and earlier this year new CEO Larry Page was expected to explain to an analyst’s conference why quarterly revenue was well under forecast. Instead the CEO spoke less than 400 words of general optimism, then signed off. Wall Street hammered the stock, wiping $US15 billion off the value of Google in a single day.  

How much would it have cost Google to bring in one reputation management expert and one media trainer the weekend before the conference? The highest paid in the world wouldn’t have made a scratch compared to the $15 billion loss the weak presentation caused.

Quantified? I think so.

The BCM Blogging Team

Comments 2

  1. Jacquie

    Love this on quantifying reputation. But how do I convince my CEO that reputation needs a bigger stake at the table? For example, I’d like to add it to our firm’s strategic plan when we readdress the plan. I don’t know how to write about our reputation & its value to ensure these issues are added to a plan that mostly addresses tangible business issues. I suspect there would be resistance to adding it to our firm’s “core values,” which are included in the strategic plan, but I believe reputation needs to be there. This must be an issue a lot of PR people face…

    1. Jonathan Bernstein

      It is DEFINITELY an issue a lot of PR people face, Jacquie, and there’s no easy answer. I have had the best success by continually putting educational information under the noses of decision makers. In my case, my newsletter and books have served that purpose well. You may find it useful to find stuff I’ve written about crisis preparedness and get it to your CEO. That said, however, the combination of arrogance and denial can undermine the perception of certain types of CEOs, and I don’t know if yours is one of them. If you gave me more specifics — even in private email if you wish — I could respond in more detail. Thanks for coming by!


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