What if Lance Armstrong had corporate PR tools?

The cyclist will tell Oprah tonight that he took drugs, a likely start toward rebuilding his image. What tools and tactics might a Lance Armstrong LLC use to rebrand?

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In short, he admits to doping.

Traditionally, Oprah’s couch has started the road to redemption for celebrities who have failed to live up to the public’s expectations. An apology, which is apparently forthcoming, is almost always essential to the process.

Now consider this: What if Lance Armstrong were instead Lance Armstrong Inc., a corporation? He’d have additional tools at his disposal for the reputation-saving campaign he is embarking upon. Let’s explore just how the crisis communications plan would be different for Lance the corporation versus Lance the celebrity.


This is a tried and true technique for companies and other organizations ensnared in scandal: Change your name. Tobacco companies, airlines, and many others trying to get away from the past have done so.

Lance could pick something modern sounding, maybe with its roots in classical Greek—or perhaps a combo of some translations of “arm” and “strong.” Brazofuerte Inc., anyone? His next challenge would then be investing to build up the new brand.

Appoint new management

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