Call it political or not but celebrity brands need damage control in crisis situations. For Chris Brown he will forever be known as a woman beater, a less forgiving charge in the public eye. Believe it or not poor dear Rihanna has a much bigger problem, as her sex symbol brand is now attached to allegations of passing along a STD (sexually transmitted disease) to Chris Brown. And not just any STD but herpes (the one that is forever and ever)! The urban luxury market, also strong supporters of Rihanna are not forgiving of this charge at all however true or false.
The first mistake Chris Brown does is goes out and hires a high profile attorney with a good track record but bad celebrity stigma attached. Immediately everyone is thinking this kid must be guilty? Please hold up before you judge this young guy and he is young only 19 years old. So, Chris retains Mark Geragos, who actually lost Winona Ryder’s shoplifting case and had Michael Jackson almost serving time before he jumped ship. Not to mention Geragos is associated with Scott Peterson a convicted killer and we all know how the public feels about Peterson killing his wife Laci and unborn child.
The first mistake Rihanna does is NOT communicating with her fans and the public. Everyone wants to know if the story is true or not did, she give Chris Brown herpes? A PR firm and publicist nightmare! One day they have the hottest sexiest star on the planet even rumored to overthrown Beyonce, followed by a STD rumor to kill everything they have worked so hard for. Stop before we judge Rihanna and please also understand she is a young girl, only 20.
What could Rihanna do to salvage her brand?
First she must put people in place to make the public understand that what happened is a private matter and could be a learning lesson for all young people. However, remaining silent is a slow death for Rihanna’s career and brand. It is important to confess to fans and the public that she was the woman attacked. Make sure that the public knows that she wants the details to remain private and that this is her personal business. A learning lesson of why at a young age sexual relationships should be given serious thought before moving forward.
Something like this:
“Yes, that was me and that is my personal and private business that I am not going to discuss. No, I am no longer with Chris Brown and I wish him well.”
Rihanna once recovered needs to move on with her appearances and plans as usual. Keeping exposure is the fuel of a brand and reputation.
What could Chris Brown do to salvage his brand?
Admit that he made a bad judgment carried out by passion and love! Let the public know that what happened is a private matter and could be a learning lesson for all young people. Bashing Rihanna and hoping to gain public sympathy will be a slow death for Chris Brown’s career and brand. Chris needs to put people in place to let everyone know that this is a private matter and he will not ever discuss it.
Something like this:
“I really made a bad judgment call which I let my emotions control me. I am not going to discuss details of what happened ever and thank those who respect my wishes to keep my personal and private business private. As for Rihanna I wish her well and no, we are no longer a couple.”
Chris should take some anger management classes to understand why passion controlled him and to prevent something like this from ever happening again.
He should move on with appearances and plans as usual. It will be extremely important for Chris to gain as much exposure as possible.
I personally wish these two young people the best of luck and know that with the right PR strategies in place it does get easier. Thank you to the dear friend of both Rihanna and Chris who wanted me to tell what they both could do to help their brands and reputations.
Best of luck!