Public Opinion: Subway Restaurant’s PR Nightmare

The ability to sway public opinion is never an easy task, especially after a major news story breaks and threatens the reputation of a company.  This is exactly what is happening to the major restaurant chain, Subway.

Jared Fogle has long been a spokesperson for Subway restaurants, traveling the country telling stories of his astonishing weight loss.  Today, however, there are suspicions that Jared may be connected to a child pornography investigation (Hullinger, 2015).

Photo courtesy of The Daily Sheeple.

This leaves Subway in the middle of a PR disaster.  Subway has a huge challenge ahead of them to maintain the reputation of their brand.  They have so far suspended the relationship with Fogle and have removed him from their online presence. Subway has so far done a good job doing damage control.  They acted quickly and did not try to cover up the story or pass the blame. Some say that the popular sandwich company should have dropped Fogle a long time ago.  The brand had been struggling, and their campaign strategies were not working.  Now with this latest drama unfolding, it will be interesting to see what happens to the company.  As for Jared, it appears that his spokesperson days have come to an end.  There are certain acts that, once committed, are nearly impossible to fix; being associated with pedophilia is one of them. (Hullinger, 2015)

Food for thought: What are some other actions or decisions that would be nearly impossible to recover from, even with the help of the best PR professionals?  If Jared is found NOT guilty of this involvement, what steps should he take to rebuild his own personal brand?


Hullinger, J. (2015, July 14). Lessons Learned: Inside a PR Disater. Retrieved July 14, 2015, from Fast Company:


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