Content Controversy: Lessons from Lands’ End

Posted by Steve Snyder

Mar 24, 2016 2:58:43 PM

Lands-end.jpgEvery now and then (well let’s be honest, it’s pretty often actually), another iconic brand steps spectacularly into it and presents us with the opportunity to opine on the do’s and don’ts associated with brand loyalty. You know, that highly coveted characteristic where you’ve converted costly, desirable prospects into returning, tried-and-true customers whose only requirement is that you steadfastly delight them with your brand experiences.

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Topics: Branding, Content Development, Public Relations, Crisis communications, Brand reputation

Das Scandal: Rebuilding VW's Brand Equity

Posted by Steve Snyder

Oct 1, 2015 9:06:46 AM

Volkswagen's Brand Equity Plummits Wooooosshhhh. That crescendo you’ve been hearing is the air deflating from Volkswagen’s formerly bouncy and beloved little tires, or brand if you will. Like Lindsay Lohan’s performance in a bad Herbie the Love Bug remake, the iconic brand – not to mention it’s stock value – has tanked virtually overnight, leaving more than 75 years of brand equity in the wreckage. The damage to the brand’s value as a corporate asset? Virtually incalculable.

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Topics: Branding, Crisis communications

What NOT To Do: 3 Crisis Communications Tips We Can Learn From the NFL

Posted by Tracy Hartman

Sep 24, 2014 11:01:36 AM

Football_DSC6711Sports fan or not, you’ve probably been living under a rock if you haven’t heard about the Ray Rice fiasco, or more pointedly, the NFL’s horrible handling of the issue. Not to mention some of the other indiscretions by other NFL players since Ray Rice’s story came to light.

To briefly recap, Ray Rice, who is (or was) a running back with the Baltimore Ravens, was initially caught on videotape dragging his unconscious then-fiancé (and now wife) out of a casino elevator in February. However, the real issue surrounding the incident is when a second video inside the elevator revealed how she became unconscious (as if it was a mystery!). Blurry and jumpy video reveals she and Ray hitting each other, ending with Ray’s blow to her that left her limp on the floor of the elevator.

This in and of itself is despicable for what it represents: domestic violence. There’s no disputing that. But when we take a look at how the NFL handled the overall situation, headed by commissioner Roger Goodell, it becomes a crisis communications chaotic mess. 

What was once a well-thought-of brand (for the most part), the NFL has definitely taken a blow over the past couple of weeks. 

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Topics: Public Relations, Crisis communications

Hackers + Data Breaches = a BIG Problem for Their Brand and YOURS

Posted by Tracy Hartman

Aug 22, 2014 9:32:00 AM

shutterstock_81825655_data_hackerTarget and Neiman Marcus. These are two brands you normally don't hear mentioned in the same conversation, as one is a discount retailer and the other a luxury specialty department store.

However, they do have one dubious, common trait: they both have customers whose credit card information was stolen, the result of hackers gaining access to their "secure" data.

Target now says up to 110 million of their customers were affected by the breach, a big difference from the 40 million they originally reported. The number of Neiman Marcus customers affected is still not known.  

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Topics: Healthcare, Branding, Crisis communications

The Market Basket Effect, the 99% & Brand Loyalty

Posted by Chris Langathianos

Jul 24, 2014 11:05:00 AM

market-basketIn New England, the shelves at supermarket chain, Market Basket, are running bare. Meat, seafood and produce are things of the past. The usually packed parking lots are barely seeing a trickle of traffic, with some stores reporting fewer than 10 customers by noon. No, this isn’t a post-apocalyptic scene from a Stephen King film. This is a different kind of tale, one that is real, or even surreal, and the star of this tale is a beloved brand.

As protesters stand guard near the entrance to the stores, I’m struck by the age variation of those holding their ground — seasoned veterans right down to what appear to be student workers choosing to protest rather than enjoy the extra hot sunny day off during their summer study break.

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Topics: Brand Strategy, Crisis communications

Boston is Stronger Than Ever

Posted by Tracy Hartman

Apr 22, 2014 4:31:44 PM

marathonIt’s been a year and a week since the mayhem took place on Boylston Street at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, an event that began in 1897 and is the oldest and arguably the most revered road race in the nation. This iconic marathon is now run on Patriots Day, a day on which the New England states commemorate the historic Battle of Lexington and Concord.  

After a long winter of cold weather, and this is especially true after the seemingly endless winter we New Englanders just experienced, there's nothing like getting out on a (relatively) warm April day to soak in the sunshine, watch the runners and celebrate spring. 

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Topics: Public Relations, Crisis communications