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Though insulated from the social media revolution up till now, Corporate Affairs professionals are beginning to get a taste of the radically altered relationship between corporations and the public that has become par for the course for marketers in the B2C world.
At the time of writing, most companies and institutions are aware of thedamage that negative online conversations can do to their reputation and, as a result, to their operations and bottom line. In response, many have put in place some kind of monitoring system to track online mentions of concern or have hired a paid supplier to scan and report.
It’s a sad fact that reputation management literature largely deals with the defensive aspects of the issue, such as responding to attacks and crisis management. But how about working ahead and being proactive in establishing solid goodwill between the company or institution you represent and its clients and stakeholders?
My work on social media strategy and online reputation these past few years has repeatedly brought me back to one approach that holds great promise for bridging polarities and enabling collaborative problem solving around some of the world’s toughest and most controversial issues.