NEW YORK--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Makovsky, a leading independent integrated communications firm, today released its 2013 Most Improved Reputation List which ranks the financial services companies with the most improved reputations.
“It appears that corporate reputation in the financial services industry is on a comeback, but it is a slow, fragile and sometimes dicey recovery”
This most improved reputation list is part of the 2013 Makovsky Wall Street Reputation Study designed to determine the current state of the financial industry’s reputation and identify best practices and emerging trends. It was conducted by Echo Research among marketing, communications and investors relations executives at large and mid-sized financial services firms.
The 2013 Makovsky Most Improved Reputation List*:
1. Wells Fargo
2. J.P. Morgan
4. Bank of America
6. American Express
7. Merrill Lynch
8. Goldman Sachs
*Respondents asked, “Thinking about corporate reputation, what one financial services company has improved the most in the past 12 months?”
“It appears that corporate reputation in the financial services industry is on a comeback, but it is a slow, fragile and sometimes dicey recovery,” said Scott Tangney, executive vice president at Makovsky. Our study indicates a very long road to strong reputation remains and the risk of recurring government actions and fines as well as other negative news will impede the entire industry’s image restoration.”
Makovsky unveiled the 2013 Most Improved Reputation List at a recent Financial Communications Society event in Manhattan where a panel of top communications executives for leading financial services brands -- including AIG, UBS, Wells Fargo and The Hartford -- provided insight and personal experiences in their work to rebuild the reputations of their company and industry. Some of the key takeaways include:
- When thinking about rebuilding damaged reputations, the panelists concurred that there are no shortcuts. Much of the damage from the financial crisis remains, and it's going to take a long time for the industry to completely heal.
- Winning back the industry’s overall reputation has been hampered by a number of regulatory and legal hurdles.
- Regulations have evolved and, in many cases, become more cumbersome and are actually seen as a burden by consumers, (i.e. the request for more documentation or information that had never been collected before).
- Many companies have tailored their lines of business to go back to the basics, focus on core strengths and reduce risk, which has help them rebuild reputation.
- Financial firms will continue to attempt to differentiate themselves from other companies that have problems, but companies understand that when one firm has a big reputation problem it's usually a problem for everyone.
- Internal communications is increasingly critical. Financial firms’ employees must not only understand strategies, but they must be able to believe in them and be able to speak to them. The industry as a whole is spending a great deal of time building internal ambassadors who have a strong understanding of brand and strategy before taking messages out to the general public.
- Social media has become closely tied to business initiatives at financial services firms and an important tool in rehabilitating reputations, as it allows financial firms to communicate with customers in ways that customers enjoy.
- Financial firms will be making greater use of communications platforms like Twitter and Facebook to directly engage with consumers. And they are conducting more, and deeper, monitoring of social media sites to better gauge public impressions of programs.
For more findings from the 2013 Makovsky Wall Street Reputation Study, visit http://bit.ly/17Cthas
In May 2013 Echo Research completed 151 interviews with executives and managers responsible for the management and supervision of communications, investor relations or marketing at large and mid-sized publicly traded and private financial services institutions. The type of companies surveyed included banks, brokerage firms, asset management firms, insurance companies, real estate companies, credit card companies, mortgage lenders, venture capital firms, credit unions and financial technology firms. The study has a margin of error of +/- 8.0% at a 95% confidence level.
Founded in 1979, Makovsky (www.makovsky.com) is one of the nation’s largest independent integrated communications firms. The firm attributes its success to its original vision: that the Power of Specialized Thinking™ is the best way to build reputation, sales and fair valuation for a client. Based in New York City, the firm has agency partners in 100 cities through IPREX (IPREX.com), the second largest worldwide public relations agency partnership, of which Makovsky is a founder.