Communication Matters

Analysis, critique, and advice on today's hot news topics from the perspective of a Strategic PR Consultant.

Posts Tagged ‘Emmanuel A. Smart’

The Power of The Apology in Forgiveness. It works!

Posted by mrsmart on February 25, 2014

ukraineUKRAINE: RIOT POLICE KNEEL DOWN AND BEG FOR FORGIVENESS.

Contrary to popular misconceptions, apologizing in a conflict as what we just witnessed in Ukraine is neither a sign of admission of guilt nor a sign of weakness. It is in the spirit of community preservation. The unexpected outcome may be greater national unity as a result.

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JUST AS I PREDICTED, HERMAN CAIN IS DONE.

Posted by mrsmart on December 4, 2011

As I predicted when the first accuser spoke on television about Hermann Cain’s harassment, Mr. Cain is done. He says he will endorse another candidate. See below for my referenced Facebook post.

CRISIS ALERT! Herman Cain Will Hold A News Conference at 5pmET Tuesday.–NBC News. Written on November 7, 2011

A little late. However, if true, it’ll be the first good crisis management move Mr. Cain has made since his sexual harassment troubles began. The fact is, these allegations and accusers will not go away. Reporters, like sharks, smell blood in the water. They too, are going no where.

Unfortunately, Mr. Cain lost control of the issue the moment he chose denial, pontification, and evasiveness as his preferred crisis management tactics.

To have any chance of changing subjects and focusing on his 9-9-9- tax plan or anything else, he must be prepared to answer all reporters’ questions at the presser until there are no more left. Either way, he may have taken a serious body blow this afternoon from which he may not fully recover.

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Rupert Murdoch, Damaged BRAND?

Posted by mrsmart on July 21, 2011

This piece is written in response to Mr. Steve Forbes’ op/ed on the News Corp phone hacking crisis, titled “Why Rupert Murdoch Will Survive And Thrive Again.” http://blogs.forbes.com/steveforbes/2011/07/18/why-rupert-murdoch-will-survive-and-thrive-again/#respond

In his piece, Mr. Forbes compares today’s News Corp’s phone hacking crisis with Mr. Rupert Murdoch’s company’s excessive debt and almost certain bankruptcy about twenty years ago. In that crisis, Mr. Murdoch was said to have successfully applied tools of crisis management, survived, and even thrived.

Where I beg to differ with Mr. Forbes, however, is that this is different. More than finances or money, this “Mother of all CRISES” damages his most important asset, his BRAND.

Comparing the pre-internet, pre-blogs and pre-twitter excessive debt and bankruptcy “crisis,” twenty years ago, to today’s potentially felony phone hacking crisis, is comparing apples and oranges. True, the bankruptcy case may have been tough, managing its fallout, however, was straightforward. It had the key elements necessary for a successful crisis management.

It had exigency, a clearly defined crisis brought about by Mr. Murdoch’s company’s excessive debt and subsequent potential for bankruptcy. It had a leader of the conglomerate, Mr. Murdoch himself, willing to get into the “trenches” and make things right. In addition, there were heads of banks and other financial institutions with whom to communicate, ask forgiveness, and negotiate modified payment terms, and so on. This set of people had just one common interest: to ensure they got paid what was owed to them so they don’t lose their investments. Indeed, according to Mr. Forbes, Mr Murdoch met with them, acknowledged the seriousness of the issue and committed to fix what was wrong, and voila!

Unfortunately, unlike the bankruptcy crisis, this crisis has too many moving parts; too many competing interests, with too many possible outcomes. The scandal’s reaches are too long, too wide and too deep for a quick crisis resolution. Worse, it is ongoing with almost no end in sight. To say nothing of feeding frenzy from competitors who would like nothing than seeing Murdoch’s Media Empire fall.

Can Mr. Murdock survive and thrive financially? Yes. This write-up, however, is about something much more than money. It is about the risk to his BRAND. With these endless investigations, in the end, Rupert Murdoch’s BRAND may be irreparably damaged whether or not he is cleared of any wrongdoing.

Emmanuel A. Smart is President of Smart Expressions, a Strategic Public Relations and Corporate Communication firm based in Houston, TX; He teaches strategies, tactics and tools of communication, offering onsite and monthly public seminar, consulting and design services. More information, visit http://www.smartexpressions.com

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Rupert Murdoch, Damaged BRAND?

Posted by mrsmart on July 21, 2011

This piece is written in response to Mr. Steve Forbes’ op/ed on the News Corp phone hacking crisis, titled “Why Rupert Murdoch Will Survive And Thrive Again.” http://blogs.forbes.com/steveforbes/2011/07/18/why-rupert-murdoch-will-survive-and-thrive-again/#respond

In his piece, Mr. Forbes compares today’s News Corp’s phone hacking crisis, with Mr. Rupert Murdoch’s company’s excessive debt and almost certain bankruptcy about twenty years ago. In that crisis, Mr. Murdock was said to have successfully applied tools of crisis management, survived, and even thrived.

Where I beg to differ with Mr. Forbes, however, is that this is different. More than finances or money, this “Mother of all CRISES” damages his most important asset, his BRAND.

Comparing the pre-internet, pre blogs and pre-twitter excessive debt and bankruptcy crisis, twenty years ago, to today’s felony phone hacking crisis, is pure apples and oranges. In the bankruptcy case, while it may have been tough, the crisis still had key ingredients for successful crisis management.

It had exigency, a clearly defined crisis brought about by Mr. Murdock’s company’s excessive debt and subsequent potential for bankruptcy. It had a leader of the conglomerate, Mr. Murdock himself, willing to get into the “trenches” and make things right. In addition, there were heads of banks and other financial institutions with whom to communicate, ask forgiveness, and negotiate modified payment terms, and so on. These set of people had just one common interest: to ensure they got paid what was owed to them and not lose their investments. Indeed, according to Mr. Forbes, Mr Murdock met with them, acknowledged the seriousness of the issue and committed to fix what was wrong, and voila!

Unlike in the “bankruptcy” crisis, this one has too many moving parts, too many competing interests, with too many possible outcomes, very few, if any, favorable. The scandal’s reaches are long, wide and deep, and ongoing. To say nothing of feeding frenzy from competitors who would want nothing more than seeing Murdock’s Media Empire fall.

So, while Mr. Murdock may survive and thrive financially; with these endless investigations, however, his most valuable asset, his BRAND, may be irreparably damaged. That’s why Billionaire Warren Buffett is often credited with saying: “If you steal my money, I will forgive you. If you damage my reputation, I’ll never forgive you.”

Emmanuel A. Smart is President of SMART EXPRESSIONS, a Strategic Public Relations and Corporate Communication firm based in Houston, TX; He teaches strategies, tactics and tools of communication, offering onsite and monthly public seminar, consulting and design services. More information, visit http://www.smartexpressions.com

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CHARLIE SHEEN REWRITES PR RULES WITH “DAMAGED” BRAND!

Posted by mrsmart on March 24, 2011

Unless CBS has become a monastery in the few weeks since, the Network must find a way to bring Charlie Sheen back into its fold, and FAST!

Employing the power of the new social media, Sheen has quickly returned the luster to his supposedly damaged brand, thereby rewriting the rules of PR. This isn’t how it was supposed to happen.

When CBS fired Charlie Sheen on March 4, 2011 from the CBS hit show, Two and a half men, following Sheen’s comments that insulted the show’s creator, the calculation was that Sheen was history.

With his well documented “bad boy” image to boot, his firing meant he was damaged goods. From a traditional PR and brand perspective, this narrative sounded true. Unfortunately, no one bothered to tell Charlie Sheen or the millions of followers he quickly garnered the very first day he set up his Twitter account, breaking the Guinness book of world records along the way.

This begs the questions; was Charlie Sheen’s reputation really damaged in the first place? If so, would it be his personal or professional reputation? Could CBS have made a mistake in firing him thinking audiences cared enough about his personal theatrics, and thus would jettison him and the network? Or, importantly, does Sheen’s entertainment value trump his personal shortcomings?

In my opinion, the latter is the case. Sheen is and always has been an entertainment GOLD. He has the pedigree. His record one million Twitter followers explosion in one day proves it. Last I checked, CBS is not a monastery and Sheen was never hired by CBS to become a monk, or for his clean cut image. CBS, therefore, should stop pussyfooting and conclude the rumored renegotiation of Charlie Sheen’s contract, FAST.

In the world of entertainment, audience is King. With Sheen attracting millions of fans, CBS has nothing to lose except the additional new audiences he brings, which other networks would gladly pay top dollar to snatch should CBS balk.

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Smart Expressions, Emmanuel A. Smart, Strategic Public relations Consultant, image consultant, Houston, tx, public relations, Charlie Sheen, crisis communication, public relations seminar, houston, texas, corporate communications training, business communication.

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