Auto Brands typically pull relatively high TrendSignal scores (take a look at the brand category comparisons below), and General Motors (90 points, No Change over prior month) is no exception. But the brand took the media spotlight over the last few months due to series of recalls and eventually, a date with a congressional oversight committee on Transportation Safety.

GM weathered the media spotlight quite well in our opinion. And while we believe any media coverage is good coverage, research shows that if you already command high media beachhead, then negative press can work against your position. This is the case with GM.

The July media drop suggested the brand may be returning to more normal media coverage values, i.e. below 86 points.  But Aug.-Oct. coverage held the company in a solid spotlight position.  Why should this be relevant to GM?  GM swims in the media ocean with thousands of brands, trends, topics and evolving storylines.  From the Conflict in Iraq (95 points, up +2) to coverage of  Gucci (84 points, down -1) luxury brand.  When the media turns on your brand, for whatever reason, you need to know whether the media is facing other trending stories at the same time.  Is the spotlight on your brand dimming?  In the case of GM would be a good thing while it completes the vehicle recall and addresses pending lawsuits.

Energy companies face similar challenges.