Becoming a lifestyle brand, the Apple way

I’ve led corporate branding and narrative development for companies in every industry, from start-ups to the Fortune 100.  At one point in each and every audit, when asking executives who they most want to emulate or be aligned with, they all say the same thing: “I want to be Apple.” It has happened so often…

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“Reputational foul…inconsistent messaging…on the commissioner…15 yards”

As one of the world’s largest non-profit trade organizations, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell plays the role of CEO and as chief executive, it is crucial to have consistent messaging from the brand’s voice. And right now, the NFL has a messaging problem. Before the first 1:00 p.m. kickoff of 2014 this Sunday, the league has…

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The Art of Communications: When To Be Quiet

When you work in the public relations business, you learn to work the news cycle for your clients.  Bright ambitious professionals diligently track breaking news, and get creative about how to fit their clients into the trend.   A celebrity loses a ton of weight on your client’s diet program.  A prominent attorney comments on a…

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From Hotels to Healthcare – It’s All About Reputation

  I’m at the Reputation Management Institute’s annual conference listening to great speakers talk about how to embed reputation considerations into business strategy and decision-making in order to achieve competitive advantage in the marketplace. This morning’s panelist had me at “Hello.”  Gerard van Grinsven is the CEO of Cancer Treatment Centers of America, but ironically,…

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Buffet Backtrack on CEO Pay: Reputation Buster, or Just Buffet Being Buffet?

The Oracle of Omaha has spoken, or in this case, not spoken. After boldly pronouncing large shareholders as the last line of defense on CEO pay just a few years ago, Buffet declined to vote against the Coca-Cola compensation packages he termed excessive. In fact, he declined to vote at all. Is abstaining a cop…

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Can you monetize your reputation? Ask Vernon Davis

Reputations are often described as “priceless” – particularly among those who’ve earned a stellar one. But the latestFantex IPO of Vernon Davis suggests that reputation can be quantified, and even monetized. If you haven’t been following, Vernon Davis is the world’s first publicly traded NFL player – offering fans an opportunity to “buy in” to…

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Litigation PR Lessons From The Brigadier General Sinclair Trial

Admin’s Note: This post originally appeared on The Holmes Report In late 2012, Brigadier General Jeffrey Sinclair, a highly decorated combat veteran and deputy commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, was charged with sexual assault. Initial media coverage was toxic; he was tried and convicted in the court of public opinion before the case even…

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Reputation Bracketology: JCPenney v. JPMorgan Chase

And it all comes down to this: the final game of the tournament. The winner takes home the trophy, and the loser just takes the bus. In this matchup, we have two strong teams squaring off after two bruising rounds of competition. Here’s where things currently stand: JCPenney   JCPenney came into the tournament as…

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Reputation Bracketology: JCPenney v. General Motors

JCPenney: In the first round, JCPenney proved that returning head coach CEO Mike Ullman was onto something when the “Retailers” defeated Toyota to advance to the Final Four. When Ullman returned to the helm of the iconic American brand, he had his work cut out for him. The previous coaching staff had essentially run the…

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Throwing in the Towel: How to Build Reputation in a No-Win Scenario

Last week, while most fans of college athletics were glued to their television screens as the March Madness Tournament pressed into the Sweet Sixteen, a much more dramatic event with long-term impacts for college athletics occurred in Chicago. On March 26, a National Labor Relations Board regional office recognized Northwestern University football players as university…

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