What you never want a customer to say about your business

We’ve talked a lot here at Red Slice about “walking your talk” and living your brand inside and out. Here is one newspaper article quote you never, ever, EVER want associated with your company and brand:

Chevron’s rhetoric and the public image that they put forward is very different from how they’re actually operating.”

This is from a recent WSJ article citing Chevron’s new ad campaign. The campaign attempts to answer critics head-on and evoke almost an anti-industry message. In an industry where most advertising shows generic, almost fairy-tale images of “frolicking children, serious scientists and splendid vistas of mountains and rivers”, Chevron is going head-on to address what oil companies should and shouldn’t be doing on a moral level. Headlines like “oil companies should support the communities they’re a part of. We agree.” and “Oil companies should put their profits to good use” abound in this campaign.

But are people buying it? Apparently not all of them, as indicated by the quote above.

Don’t make a claim unless you can really support it. And if you really want to make that claim in order to remain competitive, then ensure you modify your practices, policies, products or personnel to back up that claim. There are no shortcuts. Do what you say, say what you do. That’s how you build a strong brand over time.

Do you think oil companies can effectively change their brands over time? If so, how?

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