Tag Archives: reputation

London Could Boot Uber Based on Reputation Issues

UBER_(1)We all know that a poor reputation is harmful to a business’ bottom line, but rarely is that connection so clear as in the case of Uber. We learned this weekend that the car service could be out business in London as soon as the end of this month, and the reason cited by regulators is “a lack of corporate responsibility.”

As The Wall Street Journal reported:

London’s top transport authority stripped Uber Technologies Inc. of its private-car hire license in the city, threatening to shut the company out of one of its biggest markets.

The surprise decision presents another obstacle for the company as it tries to pare heavy losses and right itself amid a series of scandals, probes and board infighting. The authority, Transport for London, cited “a lack of corporate responsibility” that it said could undermine public safety and security, and said it won’t issue Uber a new license when its current one expires Sept. 30.

What do regulators mean by a lack of corporate responsibility? In short, a bad reputation. You can point to a number of issues over the past two years ranging from the FBI investigating its nefarious “Project Greyball” to allegations of false advertising to sexual harassment claims, and the list goes on and on.

London is an important market for Uber, and it represents approximately 3.25 million users – nearly a third of its active user base in Europe. The annual gross revenue hit to Uber could total $400 million, about 5 percent of the company’s overall gross revenue.

Often, trying to calculate the precise damage a crisis does to a brand’s reputation is extraordinarily difficult. With Uber, we may be able to start with $400 million. The additional damage that the company has suffered by those jumping on the #DeleteUber bandwagon continues to be difficult to quantify, but it may be many times the damage that London could cause it.

The Art of an Apology Tested in the Past Week

sorry_desuIt’s been a week of very public apologies: Pepsi, United Airlines and White House press secretary Sean Spicer.

Without getting into the merits of each crisis communication instance, since we have already worn a path around the water cooler, in general there are some best practices to make an effective apology that will at least take a bit of the sting out of a negative situation.

Immediacy: When something goes wrong and your reputation is at stake, the sooner you apologize, the better. This can be difficult, without knowing all the facts and when dealing with legal issues. But, an immediate apology that expresses remorse, admits responsibility, makes amends and promises that it won’t happen again should still feel real without having completed a full investigation.

Use Social Media: Either through Twitter, Facebook, YouTube — apologize on a platform that your target audiences are following. Read more after the jump…

Split-second Judgment

Think about the last meeting you attended with new people around the table. What first impressions raced through your thoughts? Did you like someone’s smile or hairstyle? Did someone look more “approachable” than someone else?

Your brain makes up its mind about a person within milliseconds of meeting him/her. Yep. Your brain judges people even before you even get to know him or her. According to a recent article, “Stop making these 15 body language mistakes,” by Bernard Marr, founder and CEO, Advanced Performance Institute, your brain is already fast at work categorizing the person, predicting what he/she will do and anticipating how you should react. Read more after the jump…

Red Cross Faces Reputational Disaster

Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 10.16.17 AMAn investigative report from NPR and ProPublica has sent the aid organization scrambling to downplay its findings. Instead, the Red Cross should own up to mistakes and promise to correct them. Read more about tips from GroundFloor Media’s Gil Rudawsky how the organization can take to fix its reputation in this PR Daily article.

Denver Business Journal Quotes GFM Crisis Expert on NFL Image

NFL_LogoThe National Football League — now under one of the harshest spotlights it’s endured since its inception in 1920 — is at a crossroads where it can either repair its tarnished reputation, or suffer further brand decay, say marketing and sports business experts including GroundFloor Media’s Gil Rudawsky.

Rudawsky says the NFL’s issues are particularly problematic since they are trying to grow its female audience, said Rudawsky, a vice president at GFM.

“They need to revisit their rules and policies for offenders,” Rudawsky said. “They need to make sincere and genuine rule changes and make it clear these things can’t happen. They’re trying to grow their market share for women, and they need to get this right or they’re going to miss out on a huge opportunity.”

If there’s a silver lining, it’s that this spotlight could help prevent domestic violence and child abuse going forward.

“The NFL and its players are role models. They can use this as a teachable moment, where all other sports and businesses can make some real inroads to stop domestic violence,” Rudawsky said.

Read the entire article HERE.

Business Development And Being the Stoner State

Screen Shot 2014-05-07 at 4.48.13 PMColorado is all over the national media these days, but it might not be the kind of press that the state is looking for in terms of economic development. Marijuana has quickly become Colorado’s signature issue in the media, and the coverage hasn’t exactly portrayed the state in a favorable light.

During the recent Colorado Experience, hosted by the Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation, Kelly Brough said while the state is getting lots of press, it really hasn’t changed the way Colorado does business.

“Despite what everyone is saying, the marijuana industry is small,” Brough, the executive director of the Metro Denver Chamber, told about 120 business executives on a tour of Pueblo. “Revenues are so small it doesn’t even rank with our other industries.”
Read more after the jump…

GroundFloor Media Crisis Expert Quoted in National News Story

Screen shot 2013-08-22 at 10.40.28 AMGroundFloor Media’s Gil Rudawsky was quoted this week by Ragan’s daily news service on real-time PR monitoring.

Rudawsky, who co-leads GroundFloor Media’s crisis communication service line, is quoted about how real-time monitoring of TV and radio is especially useful in crises.

“With our clients, particularly ones who are facing a crisis, we really need to know the exact minute a report hits the media so we can begin sending out response messages and start round-the-clock monitoring of social media,” Rudawsky says in the article.

Read the entire piece here.

Making Colorado: State’s Branding Campaign vs. Pot

20111025-FS-SMIt was only a matter of time before “entrepreneurs” launched a pot tour of Colorado. Last Sunday’s Denver Post, had an article about a company called My 420 Tours (April 20th or 4/20 refers to a national day where people gather to smoke marijuana).

I covered the topic of Colorado’s moniker as the cannabis state in an earlier blog post. Now, five months after Colorado voters approved Amendment 64, which legalized use and possession of up to an ounce of marijuana for anybody over 21 in the state — I wondered if all the work around Colorado’s “healthiest state in the nation” reputation had been replaced by another moniker. Consider some of the recent headlines I came across:

  • USA Today: USA’s first ‘pot tourism’ firm touts Colorado trip
  • Business Week: Q&A: Is Colorado the Napa Valley of Weed?
  • Los Angeles Times: Colorado’s new growth industry: pot

Read more after the jump…

Jack Welch: This is what I meant by my inflammatory tweet

Jack Welch has earned the right to have a big mouth.

But the outspoken former CEO of General Electric has not earned the right to make controversial statements and not get taken to task for them. Ever since his tweet on Friday blaming strong unemployment numbers on “these Chicago guys” cooking the numbers for political gain, he has been the target of attacks.

Finally on Tuesday, Welch cried uncle, but instead of backing down from this claim he stepped down from his soapbox column hosted by Fortune and Reuters. He said that the column that he co-wrote with his wife Suzy Welch would get better “traction” elsewhere.

He didn’t waste any time getting back on track and Welch late Tuesday offered a 1,000-word rebuttal in The Wall Street Journal explaining his Friday tweet. He teased it from his Twitter account: “Here, in the Wall Street Journal, is what I couldn’t say in 140 characters.”

Read the entire post at Ragan’s PR Daily.

Romney delivers but #eastwooding goes viral

In what was being billed as the biggest moment of his political career, GOP candidate Mitt Romney offered his best as a caring, presidential person and predictably hit all the right notes in his acceptance speech Thursday night.

But the biggest surprise of the night was Clint Eastwood’s completely befuddling, funny, and painful stage act previewing Romney’s speech. Even CNN’s Anderson Cooper couldn’t stop talking about it in the post speech discussion.

The Twitter-sphere went off the hook, with thousands of updates each minute and a new viral meme #eastwooding, in which people shared pictures of themselves pointing to an empty chair. In the 30 minutes after the speech, a new Twitter account called @InvisibleObama landed 50,000 followers. The Romney campaign sent out a release to diffuse the issue saying it was not an official speech, but rather a break from them.

Read more at Ragan’s PRDaily.