More and more organisations are beginning to see the importance of building and maintaining a good reputation. A good reputation doesn’t just happen, though. It is a product of something, a consequence of action already taken.
Ambani’s philosophy is that building a good reputation is essentially about observing international best practice in good governance. Corporate governance is the sum total of all the rules, policies, organisational cultural norms and many other written and unwritten rules that direct the manner in which an organisation is managed. If the organisation is managed well, in accordance with these set guiding principles, rules and laws, then the outcome should be positive. However, if an organisation is not managed well, or pays lip service to its own governance regime, a culture will eventually develop that will manifest to the outside world through several avenues, collectively creating a company or brand with a negative reputation.
Ambani helps organisations to realise that reputation is an important asset, then helps them to build and guard that reputation – realising that good business will eventually lead to a good reputation – and help them to communicate the exemplary manner in which the business is run.
Social media has become an integral part of digital marketing and reputation management process. Ambani has a wealth of experience in managing global campaigns through social media.
We identify the stakeholders that our clients wish to engage with, develop social media strategies and implementation plans, and initiate and monitor conversations with stakeholders.
Social media allows clients to amplify their messages, measure reach and influence, and provide instant feedback on how the audience is engaging.
In collaboration with a number of select media monitoring agencies, Ambani provides insightful assessment of media coverage that can be used, among other things, for directing future media engagements.
The media monitoring reports can be tailor-made for executive management to get an overview of how the company’s messages are being decoded and how audiences are engaging with such messages.
The business environment is fraught with challenges. On any given day organisations are faced with new, emerging or recurring challenges. Ambani helps clients to conduct a reputational risk exposure matrix where we classify issues that the organisation may have to deal with.
The matrix prioritises issues on the basis of a materiality of the respective issues given the organisation’s unique circumstances.
We also generate a stakeholder matrix to reflect those stakeholders who are likely to be impacted by certain issues. This matrix also helps to define stakeholders’ relationships with the organisation and also with each other, which needs to be fully understood before a strategy can be developed to deal with issues that are most material, have the greatest impact on the business or on the basis of some other business consideration.
Any new campaign or product or service launch should ideally be informed by sound research that will guide the action that should be taken. Ambani uses various in-house and outsourced research tools (depending on the depth of the study) to give clients insight into market response to their campaigns or programmes.
Ambani Reputation Management considers public relations (PR) an important sub-set of reputation management. PR has media as its core delivery platform to help deliver our clients’ messages to their target audiences. We do this by developing highly targeted and effective media strategies to give our clients’ brands, campaigns and products a voice that has credibility.
The Ambani team has experience in the newsrooms of some of the country’s most respected publications which means we understand how to create messages that have credibility and have media appeal. We continually appraise ourselves of changes in the media so that we are able to work with media houses in a mutually beneficial way, as opposed to the traditional approach where PR agencies function as a mere conveyor belt to deliver press releases to the media. Our PR offering recognises the importance of good story telling. We tell our clients’ stories in a manner that ensures audiences engage with the message. Most importantly, we make sure that the story is credible and that it can lead to change or influence public opinion, thereby driving a change in behaviour.
The age-old saying that employees are an organisation’s brand ambassadors remains relevant, even in today’s online world. Generally speaking, successful companies are those that empower their brand ambassadors so that they can deliver the desired messages accurately and confidently.
Internal communication is the process of aligning employees’ thinking with the organisations’ vision and mission. It is an ongoing process that should be guided by the company’s values, establishing a process of mutual trust between the organisation and its leadership.
The Ambani team is well versed in assisting companies of various sizes to draft and implement successful internal communication strategies across a wide variety of platforms.
Investors in publicly traded companies require information to continually assess the value and prospects of their investments. There has to be a flow of information between the company and its investors, including company performance updates, annual results, annual general meetings, and analyst briefings.
Information that comes from the organisation and which may be market sensitive has to be handled in a manner that does not prejudice one investor over another. The JSE and other regulatory bodies have strict rules in place to ensure that investors are treated fairly and that the information shared represents the company’s state of affairs as accurately as possible at any given point in time.
When organisations have a comprehensive issue management process, fewer issues will surprise management by developing into full-blown crisis.
However, despite the most careful of planning, disasters can still happen. In times of crisis, leadership needs to be visible. At Ambani we have come to realise that a crisis may actually present an organisation an opportunity to enhance its relationships with stakeholders. It all depends on how the situation is handled.
Rule of thumb: tell the truth, tell it first and tell it fast. However, it’s important to bring in some context to get your perspective across. Commissioning a crisis management expert such as Ambani to assist in this process will help to mitigate the fallout.