J&J’s image suffers after ‘baby powder’ lawsuits

The once beloved health care brand is failing to increase positive sentiment with consumers. Here’s how managers responded to a substantial buzz score dip.

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Johnson & Johnson—one of the world’s most trusted brands in health care products—has taken a major hit to its reputation this year.

In February, J&J carried a YouGov BrandIndex Buzz score of 18. The figure measures positive and negative sentiment surrounding a brand. The brand’s score has fallen significantly—dropping to 5.4 earlier this month.

The cause for the drop? A series of lawsuits that claim talcum powder, such as its iconic baby powder, are linked to an increase in being at risk for ovarian cancer. Last year, a St. Louis jury ruled against J&J in a negligence lawsuit. A plaintiff was awarded $10 million in compensatory damages and the brand was slapped with $62 million in punitive damages.

More than 1,000 similar cases are pending. RELATED: Think like a journalist to get your story covered at our PR Writing Conference.

A J&J spokesman responded to the YouGov scores in a statement:

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