Imagine your foundation is closely tied to a worldwide recognized person who also happens to be the founder and the driving force. Now imagine that the one person who defines you organization is exposed as a fraud, cheat, and liar. One more thing, you are preparing for a major fundraising event. What do you do? How do you recover? This daunting task severely tested the marketing department at the Lance Armstrong Foundation last year.
Everyone knows the story now, Armstrong was stripped of his biking titles after a major doping scandal. But Armstrong’s name wasn’t the only thing at stake, so was his cancer charity.
While dealing with the major public relations crisis, the charity quickly disassociated itself from Armstrong and then began a major rebranding campaign. The Lance Armstrong Foundation became “LiveStrong
“. Special emphasis was then placed on the people and families the charity served. The message was clear and concise, LiveStrong’s mission was larger than any celebrity athlete.
The quick action and decisive moves not only saved the foundation, but increased both attendance and donations at the next fundraiser.
Individuals Speak Out on Behalf of The LIVESTRONG Foundation
Michelle Obama, First Lady of the United States of America – ET News
We have to remember all the people that have been helped and who will continue to need the help of [the LIVESTRONG Foundation]. We should focus on making sure that cancer survivors and people dealing with the disease have the kind of support, medical and research, that they need to deal with the situation. We can’t lose sight of that accomplishment.
Evan Handler, LIVESTRONG Foundation Envoy – Huffington Post
The LIVESTRONG Foundation has spearheaded a massive cultural shift toward pride in survivorship, and away from the stigmatization previously associated with cancer diagnoses…The determination of those present [at Foundation events] is a testament to human beings’ abilities to turn tragedies, which can never be erased, into triumphs that will also always be remembered.