Tylenol: Saving a brand’s quality reputation

RetailWire panelists weighed in recently about the series of recalls related to the “funny odor” of some product batches. My take:

Tylenol dealt with the “mother of all recalls” in 1982, and has become a textbook example of how to manage a crisis related to product safety in order to salvage a successful brand. However, the current problems are harder to manage — like death from a thousand paper cuts. The safety of Tylenol products may not be at issue, but the quality of a trusted brand certainly is — especially given the wide availability of generic equivalents. Tylenol (and J&J) needs to solve the technical problems underlying these recalls as quickly as possible, and it may need to do more “damage control” brand-image promotion and marketing. It may be a costly process to rebuild trial and trust.

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