Why and how communicators must protect their brands from ‘techlash’

Technology’s increasing presence in the marketplace has more and more consumers voicing ethical concerns and posing tough questions about those companies’ stands on key issues.

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People want to trust that their favorite companies put societal needs and values before their business interests.

However, the more powerful a company grows, the more cautious consumers become, and they start asking tough questions. This has happened several times throughout history, and the current technology backlash, or “techlash” as it’s been dubbed, is no different.

As the tech industry makes up an increasingly large chunk of Fortune 500 companies, the software and solutions they provide touch almost every aspect of our lives. Yet, whether it’s due to questionable behaviors and scandals or our natural distrust of powerful conglomerates, consumer trust in them is waning.

A recent survey by Pew Research Center found that a third of U.S. adults believe technology companies have a negative impact on the country. These companies are under more scrutiny and face even more challenges when it comes to their reputations.

For communicators, this techlash brings new challenges as tech companies work toward organizational legitimacy, and addressing societal concerns is at the forefront.

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