Only way Ellen can salvage her career
Ellen DeGeneres' reputation is in freefall but there are two things the embattled comedian can do to stop the bleeding, a brand expert has said.
Eric Schiffer, chairman of Reputation Management Consultants, told news.com.au that Ellen must deliver another apology, one that it is way more convincing than her first one.
"Her first 'apology' was wretchedly weak, lacked total truth and responsibility and pointed the finger at her staff," Mr Schiffer said. "It came off as one more celebrity elite escaping accountability, not to mention, it was far overdue.
"Ellen's best strategy is a very long vacation and a heartfelt apology that doesn't point fingers or try to wheel out her celebrity cronies to cover up, but takes responsibility," he said.
The Ellen Show is currently the subject of an internal investigation by Warner Media after past and current employees made a series of shocking allegations about what went on behind the scenes of the daytime program.
The staffers described a "toxic work environment" with a culture of "racism, fear and intimidation" and claimed there was widespread sexual misconduct among the top executives at the show.
Regardless of the outcome of the investigation, Ellen insiders have said the comedian will return as host of her talk show when Season 18 kicks off in September.
"Ellen's mammoth ego is too gigantic for her to quit," Mr Schiffer told news.com.au. "She is betting on Hollywood greed from her cash cow counting friends at Warner Bros who will test the waters and hope advertisers don't face well-organised boycotts that nuke her into a Warner memory."
US radio personality Howard Stern recently suggested that Ellen should change her image when she returns to TV.
If Stern was in Ellen's shoes, he said: "I'd go on the air and be a son of a b**ch".
"People would come on and (I would) go, 'F**k you.' Just be a pr**k," he said. "So you think I'm a pr**k? I'm going to show you."
Mr Schiffer told news.com.au that viewers will have a hard time accepting Ellen's 'nice' persona now that they've heard so many shocking stories about what goes on behind the scenes of her show.
"Viewers like truth and authenticity," Mr Schiffer said. "They now know it's a con job.
"For those who still tune in, every nicety will be scrutinised with an electron microscope, every smile will be digitally measured."
Ellen's reputation has taken a battering ever since a writer and comedian named Kevin T. Porter tweeted that the host is "notoriously one of the meanest people alive" and asked people to share their "most insane stories you've heard about Ellen being mean".
There were hundreds of responses, and the talk show host was dealt another huge blow when Buzzfeed published a bombshell report in which a group of former and current Ellen Show staff sensationally spoke out against the program.
Mr Schiffer told news.com.au that Ellen's reputation will never fully recover as a result of the allegations.
"With the enormity of press for weeks on end, it's near impossible to not have any brand lacerated into bits," he said. "She remains at the centre of a diabolical bubble of horrible Hollywood conduct and her reputation is forever damaged.
Mr Schiffer continued: "For 20 years, she built an empire off positivity and kindness. Ellen's empire is now a foundation of reports of toxicity, racism and sexual misconduct.
"Ellen may go down in history as one of the single biggest frauds in modern celebrity history," he said.
Originally published as Only way Ellen can salvage her career