Corporate reputations and brands are not the same things, and it’s important to understand the difference.
Reputations are the result of what people know about a business based on their judgements of its performance, gleaned through buying stuff, working there, owning stock, etc. It’s the present value stakeholders assign to the meaning, believability and reliability of a company’s future performance.
Brand is what a business has promised, either in performance or associated emotional benefits. It’s a future value, or “intangible,” that arises from customers’ thoughts and feelings about a present-day business that can’t be attributed to specific operational causes.
If branding is the outcome of what a company says, reputation is the result of what it does.
Going forward, both affect sales, as well as equity valuation, employee satisfaction, and other metrics of company performance. But branding tends to get defined broadly — I’ve heard more than one guru explain its limitless scope by asking “what isn’t branding?” — and reputation is often attributed to public relations, and mostly when there’s some bad news crisis (i.e. reputation is most easily seen when media headlines challenge it).
Here are 3 things you should know about reputation that could help to carve out a more focused and successful role for your efforts…
Read the entire essay at Linkedin