Joe had to go: New study by Gregory FCA shows the public perception of Joe Banner was so poor, Eagles had to act

June 11, 2012

As a national PR firm, we typically don’t dabble in local PR flare-ups of little interest to those outside Philadelphia. But here in Philly, where football is a religion, we couldn’t resist commenting on last week’s news that the Philadelphia Eagles had parted ways with long-time President Joe Banner.

The news came as a particular shock to Eagles fans, considering owner Jeffrey Lurie’s long friendship with Banner, which dates to their summer camp days in New England. So we thought we would go a little deeper and do the research. We turned to Nielsen’s BuzzMetrics, an online sentiment analysis tool that we rely on heavily to score media and online sentiment for our clients and their brands.

It’s a sophisticated tool that outscores many of the off-the-shelf media tracking services that PR shops turn to simply because they are cheaper and easier to use. But Nielsen’s name and credibility, along with the depth and accuracy of its data, makes the tool a clear leader in sentiment scoring, at least in our annual bake-off of monitoring and scoring tools.

After using Nielsen to analyze over 45,000 traditional media sources and over 150 million social media sources — including blogs, message boards, Facebook, and Twitter — we were able to compare Joe Banner’s public sentiment against other local professional sports coaches and executives.

The result is clear. On a 10-point scale, with +5 being the most positive and -5 being the most negative, Joe Banner comes in at -2.1. How bad is that? Well, a recent study we conducted on energy shows that Joe Banner is more disliked than hydraulic fracking. In fact, his sentiment is lower than Tiger Woods’ score after he got caught with his pants down and an ill-fated press conference blew up in his face. Tiger Woods’ lowest sentiment was only -1.2.

Banner scores lower than any other sports executive in town — much lower than Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren, 76ers President Rod Thorn, and Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. They scored +2.4, +2.5, and +2.7, respectively. Banner’s successor, Howie Roseman, scored an impressive +4.2!

Even more shocking is how poorly Banner scored compared to Philadelphia’s top head coaches, the guys who seemingly can never cop a break in our rabid sports town. Andy Reid, the Eagles Head Coach who last year failed to make the playoffs, scored only a -0.7 in the study. 76ers Head Coach Doug Collins scored a +2.6, while Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel scored a +2.7.

Behind them was Flyers Head Coach Peter Laviolette with a +0.8. Even Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie, who you would assume would be painted with the same brush as his good bud, outscores Joe Banner, with a -0.3 public sentiment.

For a quick laugh, here are the results:

NON-BANNER YEAR: Joe Banner clearly had the lowest public sentiment compared to others


WHO’S ON FIRST? Phillies’ Charlies Manual edges out these other Philadelphia skippers in public sentiment


HOWIE’S HIGH: Howie Roseman scores the highest in sentiment among these Philadelphia sports general managers

* Sentiment Scores are based on a 10-point scale, ranging from +5 to -5. +5 is the highest, most positive score and -5 is the lowest, most negative score. 0 represents neutral sentiment.

Charts include all available Nielsen BuzzMetrics data culled from over 45,000 traditional media sources and over 150 million social media sources, including blogs, message boards, Facebook, and Twitter.

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