Sunday, December 27, 2009

Brand Inoculation

Brand Inoculation is one of the new concepts making its rounds in the corporate world right now. It refers to all the things the company does right now to protect the brand from future shocks. It is usually in the form of activities aimed at building the brand's cache amongst consumers and the community in general.

For example, McDonald's was a favourite target for several environmental groups. So, for the past 15 years, the company has partnered with several NGos, including Conservation International, to develop processes to reduce its impact on the environment. Once the NGOs partner with McDonald's and guide its policies, it becomes difficult for them to criticize the company later.

Brand inoculation really works. When Exxon Valdez spilled oil in Alaska, it was not spared by environmental activists and protests led to severe penalties. Exxon has already paid $12 billion in damages, penalties and expenses.

British Petroleum on the other hand, is an company which has sincerely tried to establish its environmental credentials. So, in 2005, when its tanker spilled oil in Alaska, the environmentalists gave it a lot of leeway and did not go for the jugular like they did with Exxon. Interestingly, the same year, it also had multiple expolsions in a refinery in Texas and that too was largely ignored by the environmental interest groups.

No comments:

Post a Comment