Stop being taken for a PR ride

Stop being taken for a ride by your public relations (PR) company or ‘social media agency’ and stop throwing exorbitant amounts of money at communication efforts that are not well planned or strategically sound. A press release is not a silver bullet that is going to magically solve your sales problems, nor is a beautiful Facebook page. 

“When it comes to your organisation’s reputation, every aspect of the business contributes to how it is being perceived. Perceptions may not necessarily be correct, however they are somebody’s reality and do need to be managed,” says Regine le Roux, Managing Director of Reputation Matters. 

“Only once you understand exactly what these perceptions are, and which areas of the business is important to which stakeholder groups can you effectively put a reputation management strategy and communication plan in place,” explains le Roux.

“Too often business owners think that a clever press release or quirky marketing campaign is going to increase their sales. You can spend a ton of money on a fancy communication campaign but if your internal business building blocks are not in place, you may actually do a lot more harm than good,” adds le Roux. These building blocks, explains le Roux, include having the right processes, people and pricing principles in place; all of which needs to be glued together by a strategic internal and external communication plan.

Le Roux will be presenting a reputation management master class at the upcoming International Association of Business Communication (IABC) conference taking place at the Vineyard in Cape Town on 02 November 2016. She will be facilitating an interactive workshop on what it takes to enhance and improve your reputation, and will guide delegates on how to develop their own reputation strategies and plans. “After the session the delegates will have a very comprehensive idea of what they need to do to take their company’s reputation to the next level,” adds le Roux.

“Collaboration and agility is the new communication frontier in business,” says Carol Allers, IABC Chairperson. “At the conference we’ll be bringing together thought leaders from across the communication spectrum to engage, collaborate, network and most importantly to share their knowledge of business communication,” concludes Allers.

The IABC Conference will be taking place from 02 to 04 November 2016 at the Vineyard Hotel and Spa in Cape Town. For more information about the Conference visit:

For more about managing your reputation visit Join the reputation conversation on Twitter @ReputationIsKey and  Facebook


Is there real value in having a vision

Management courses are never complete without a discussion of visions, missions, objectives and goals, however do leaders of companies really know how impactful a clearly defined strategic intent can be on their business’ reputation?

Founder and Managing Director of Reputation Matters, Regine le Roux is certain that while some corporates may consider business values as ‘stale’ or going out of fashion, they are critical for good reputation management.

“All businesses must have a vision that is translated into a meaningful mission, objectives and specific goals. It is the first business building block to know what the business is about and where it is heading towards.” 

Le Roux warns that the important link between strategic intent and reputation should not be overlooked.

“Employees play a fundamental role in a business’ strategic intent as their work contributes towards achieving the vision, making it critical to communicate this to employees.” 

Having sat around many a boardroom table discussing strategic intent, le Roux has far too often seen executives become confused when finding that they all have a different version of the business vision.

“It goes without saying that this type of confusion has a major impact on the ultimate reputation of the organisation. When internal perceptions are misaligned and employees don’t know the vision of the business, how are they supposed to help achieve it?” she asks.

When the vision is not clear to a few senior managers, just imagine what the rest of the employees and other associated stakeholders may think, comments le Roux.

“If an organisation can’t be aligned internally, there is no way of expecting external stakeholders such as customers, partners or the media to be on the same page. The larger the discrepancy regarding strategic intent, the worse the impact will be to the organisation’s reputation.” 

Correcting such problems, shares le Roux, is about aligning the core concepts of the strategic intent to an organisation’s key communication initiatives. Key messages must be identified and communicated to the different stakeholder audiences. She further explains, that the crux of the message should be aligned to the overall, single-minded strategic intent of the company, regardless of the different stakeholders the business speaks to.

Regular communication of these key messages on the most appropriate channels of communication is important, says le Roux.  

“These channels differ from organisation to organisation, however, very often the most effective channels of communication are not necessarily the most expensive.”

Feedback from stakeholders through research is also valuable.

“When we measure an organisation’s reputation with our unique Repudometer® tool, we analyse the strategic direction of the organisation,” explains le Roux.

“Through analysis of feedback from respondents we can ascertain whether the concepts and terminology used to define the business’ direction is appropriate and understood by all.”

This, le Roux says, helps to identify gaps and pick up on any misaligned perceptions. Based on the research results, Reputation Matters offers customised recommendations to help take the organisation’s reputation to the next level by shaping the strategic intent into a clear direction and assisting the organisation with focussing on creating new capabilities to maximise future opportunities. 


Reputation matters when investing in public relations

In today’s fast paced world of competing for exposure for your product or service; in convincing stakeholders why your company is better than the competition, or to encourage a specific call to action, organisations are realising the importance of strategically managing their communication.

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