Managing Corporate Reputations

A recent study by Harris Interactive stated that the reputation of corporate America is improving--up to a whopping 18%. This is truly one aspect where strong, comprehensive PR is needed. There are a lot of stories in the media about corporate greed and unjust practices. Rarely, do we hear about the positive aspects put forth by companies such as community involvement, charitable donations, green initiatives, solid treatment of employees.

PR practitioners, need to communicate these messages to local, trade, national, and business press. Of course, before that, companies need to have, as a strategy, the initiative of building goodwill in its communities. As Tip O'Neill once famously stated, "All politics is local." The same can be said for PR. Of course, PR is often regional, national, international, but why not start local? Reach out into your local community, press, town government. Then, broaden your perspective by taking on state initiatives.

I can name a number of PR programs that we have done on behalf of companies and their corresponding publics, which have often led to big time media coverage. And, if a company ever slips up, there's a track record of doing good. The key is to build this into your annual business plan with the objective of putting a positive face on the company--turn that image of the corporate building into something greater.

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