Will PR firms have to be really careful about which clients they choose to represent in future in order to protect their own reputation?
It seems to me that they may, assuming public anger at big companies behaving badly stays strong.
This piece here has NYU professor Scott Galloway noting that businesses benefit from the good times and then enjoy a safety net during the bad.
As he puts it: “It’s rugged individualism, capitalism and ‘The Hunger Games’ on the way up, and on the way down it’s a lot of call signs by CEOs that we’re in this together and sort of a Hallmark Channel-like socialism.”
People are tired of this stuff.
Hacks and the wider public will keep a very close eye on how companies behave.
And while PR firms will be as desperate for income as anyone else, there’s surely a chance that agreeing to work for a client who did behave badly – using bailout money for share buybacks, for instance – will backfire.
Ask Bell Pottinger.
Perhaps big, ethical clients, might say to PR firms: if you are representing that bunch of sharks, we cannot be associated with you. Too many people are looking at everything we do, including which advisers we use.