There’s a tried and true playbook when a business faces a brand crisis: Admit the problem, give communication responsibilities to the top person, and over-correct on the solution. From the Tylenol scare in the 1980’s to the Wells Fargo scandal last year, businesses have learned that trying to cut corners on this process is a recipe for disaster: Consumers simply will not respect and trust a brand who tries to skip to the end and pretend everything is back to normal too quickly.
But what happens after the crisis is done? Companies who follow the process aren’t back to where they were, they’ve just cleared out the problem. The PR issue was a cancer. Now that it has been effectively destroyed, the patient isn’t healthy. The damage from both the disease and the cure need to be addressed before you can say the patient is back to normal.
I bring this up because I’ve noticed an uptick in an old strategy to bring pathos back to the brand perception: the appeal to the employer brand.