Stakeholder, Identity, Reputation: Introducing corporate comms

George Oliver

May 2


min read

Corporate communication plays a crucial role in building and maintaining positive reputations for organisations. 

Research has shown that a strong corporate reputation can lead to increased customer loyalty, improved financial performance, and better relationships with stakeholders. 

Meanwhile, effective corporate communication can also help to build trust among stakeholders, which in itself can help to  prevent crises from occurring. 

Additionally, communication with stakeholders can lead to increased stakeholder involvement, which can ultimately lead to improved business outcomes. 

Corporate communication fundamentals

Professor Joep Cornelissen identifies three fundamental concepts that underpin corporate communication:

  • stakeholder
  • identity
  • reputation.

In approaching corporate communications for your organisation, these three serve as useful strategic pillars for planning your tactical activity.

Stakeholder engagement

Stakeholders are individuals or groups with legitimate interest in a company and its activities.

They frequently have different needs and expectations of the business (for example, a trade union may take a different view to a shareholder) and all must be communicated with.

Doing so helps the business to maintain effective operational and financial performance.

Stakeholders may be internal (employees, management, shareholders) or external (customers, suppliers, community). 

They also require differing levels of engagement, often through different methods of communication. This is why stakeholder engagement strategy is important.

Examples of 1284 work include:

  • chairing comms group meetings for a multi-agency public-private festival
  • preparing external briefing notes relating to a large East Midlands company
  • writing internal newsletters for a major Leicestershire employer.

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Corporate identity

Corporate identity is how your business portrays itself through its visual and non-visual elements.

These might include your logo, colour schemes, taglines and messaging. 

The purpose is to differentiate your business from others, communicate its values and vision, and create a strong brand image that resonates with stakeholders. 

Effective corporate identity helps establish a unique identity that customers, investors, potential partners and other stakeholders will remember. 

Examples of 1284 work includes researching, writing, and designing:

  • a 32-page annual report for a large East Midlands company
  • a 12-page impact report for a well-known charity
  • an 8-page corporate prospectus for a social enterprise.

Managing reputation

Reputation is how others perceive your business, its products, and operations. It can increase customer loyalty, attract new customers, and increase investor confidence.

For example, Cornelissen writes that having a reputation for being financially solid, with a proven social and sustainability track record, usually provides sufficient grounds for your business to be found legitimate by all stakeholders.

For this reason, it becomes important to keep stakeholders informed of your activity in these areas - regardless of whether they have a financial interest in outcomes.

In this way, you are treating your stakeholders as being of intrinsic interest to the development of your business - rather than just being viewed as using them to further one aspect of it.

Examples of 1284 business reputation work include:

  • Writing press releases to update external parties on a change programme at a large Leicestershire company
  • Ghostwriting letters to a national leader, on behalf of an East Midlands company, to summarise progress on a project
  • Writing and optimising CSR pages of a regional SME.


Corporate communication is crucial to building your business reputation, ensuring stakeholder communication, and establishing a unique organisational identity.

Companies that prioritise stakeholder communication, build a strong corporate identity, and maintain a positive reputation, reap the benefits of increased customer loyalty, investor support, and a competitive edge.

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