Written by • Published 26th November 2014

Jennifer Lawrence Reputation Management PHA

‘image courtesy of Jennifer Lawrence Films on Flickr’

This week, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 triumphed at number 1 at the UK box office as lead protagonist Katniss Everdeen captures the world’s admiration again. The third Lionsgate film in the sequel broke records by taking over £12.6million in 565 cinemas during its opening weekend, knocking all other 2014 UK blockbusters out of the water.

The worldwide phenomenon resonates so well with its audience that 2 out of 3 cinema goers went to see Hollywood superstar Jennifer Lawrence do her thing last weekend. Not only is the nation moved by Katniss’ courage but we have all well and truly fallen in love with Jennifer Lawrence, who does a fantastic job in setting aflame the symbol of the Mockingjay.

After attending the world premiere of the film a couple of weeks ago with a few other members of the PHA team, I was expecting JLaw to adopt the classic falsities A-list actors exhibit on the red carpet. However, as soon as I saw her shimmy in front of her hundreds of adoring, waiting fans, I knew that it was as much to do with her personality as the film franchise that lent itself to her widespread popularity.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t doubt that Lawrence’s talent as an actor has contributed massively to her success and catapulted her into stardom, but I truly believe it is how she manages her reputation that many brands could learn from.

When humiliating incidents occur, for example falling when accepting an Oscar, Lawrence plays it impeccably. Instead of awkwardly dismissing the incident, she embraced it wholeheartedly by laughing it off and performing a ‘victory dance’ when she heard Hugh Jackman run to her rescue. Her ability to poke fun at herself is so refreshing, compared to the likes of Angelina Jolie who looks like she’s not heard a joke since the early ‘90’s.

Jennifer Lawrence The PHA Group

‘Image courtesy of La Real noticia on Flickr’

Lawrence frequently reminds her fans how normal she is, from eating pizza at the Oscars to showing her humble fangirl side when meeting legends such as Jack Nicholson, making her a likeable character all round. And of course, the way she handled those pictures, the biggest crisis in her career to date, somehow made her reputation stronger than ever. Instead of retreating and shying away, she responded with the utmost dignity with a bold statement pointing out that it is the cyber-creeps who stole her pictures that should be ashamed, not her.

Lawrence said, “I don’t care how much money I get for The Hunger Games. I promise you, anybody given the choice of that kind of money or having to make a phone call to tell your dad that something like that has happened, it’s not worth it.”

Again we’re reminded just how human this Hollywood star is, and that she too faces cringeworthy conversations with her parents just like the rest of us once have contributing to a complete and utter reputation bounce back. Despite the story being plastered all over the media, Lawrence received widespread sympathy and support from the public and celebrities alike, truly showcasing her stellar reputation.

So let Jennifer Lawrence’s tripping and cringing be a lesson to all brands: it’s not enough that you deliver expectations well, but personalisation is important in creating a likeable business and evoking loyalty from supporters. As much as levels of transparency work for individuals, such tactics can also work for brands and provide a poignant lesson for businesses that declare themselves transparent but don’t actually act on their words.

And for inspiration on how to be transparent in the rawest form, check out JLaw’s top 5 funniest moments here.