Oxford-Metrica, an analytics and advisory firm, reported that over 80% of companies will experience a problem that will cause a negative impact to their reputation and to their financial success. This is because most companies simply are not prepared to handle crisis and to prevent a negative reputation from getting out of control. There are numerous reputation management case studies that demonstrate this lack of preparation. Everyone is vulnerable and due to first amendment rights (a good thing) Google rarely removes search results (a bad thing).

Perhaps the most notable example in previous years is the BP oil spill. In this case, many organizations and individuals criticized BP for making numerous PR blunders after the spill. Many believed that BP spokespeople should have learned from the Exxon oil spill and how that disaster was poorly handled. While the BP oil spill in itself
was enough to have a great impact on the company, the follow-up communication strategy dug the company in deeper. Still, to BP’s credit, it was a tough situation and continues to be in the legal aftermath.

Goldman Sachs is another corporation that followed questionable tactics that led to permanent reputation damage for their company. Although a check of Google search results shows their first page is clear of negatives, the second page doesn’t look so good. Their current 10,000 women initiative is a good example of the right way to do things though.

These examples of reputation management are well known. Most companies run on a much smaller scale, yet can be just as affected by reputation management mistakes. This is why it has become increasingly common for companies to seek the advice and services of reputation management professionals who get their reputation back on track. By reducing the effects of negative press and consumer reviews while increasing positive press, it is possible to enhance the success of a business as long as these goals are achieved sooner than later.