BP: A Case Study in the Making

What happened: As everyone knows by now, BP CEO Tony Hayward has no public relations or brand marketing skills. His inability to connect with his customers was exemplified when he told the U.S. that he was suffering since he hadn’t seen his family in two weeks. His testimony during the Senate hearing this past week proved too much for him and the TV cameras captured it all. He was weak, unsure and worse, as he gave a detached description of the events surrounding the worst ecological disaster in anyone’s memory.

Why it matters: The green movement is one that many have jumped onto in many industry and consumer sectors—some with good affect, others without much benefit. Clearly, BP’s rebranding of its corporate identity uses the yellow-green combination to say we are an advanced ecological company. Now that we have learned how little BP thought about a disaster plan, there is no way this company will regain whatever brand share and mindshare it once held for decades to come. It’s difficult to conceive, but Shell and ExxonMobil seem the more mature and consumer-sensitive companies! BP has lost all of its brand trust and reputation, and that’s not a problem you can buy your way out of.

Tom Wants to Hear Your Branding Issues:
If you are a printing company, or product/services company serving the industry, and would like to be considered for a feature in this blog, please contact Tom Marin for an interview.

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Tom Marin is the managing partner of MarketCues.com and provides corporate and brand strategy to organizations of all sizes. He has an extensive background in the graphic arts, printing, publishing and media industries. Marin is an accredited member of the national and international chapters of the Business Marketing Assn., is a (CBC) certified business communicator and a past marketing chair of the Chicago chapter.

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