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Elon Musk’s Twitter Politics Add to Pressure on Tesla’s Brand Image

Richard Levick spoke to The Wall Street Journal about Tesla’s evolving reputation and brand image in connection with CEO Elon Musk.

The number of consumers who had a negative opinion of Tesla’s product quality has grown to 12.5% on Nov. 16 from 4.2% on Nov. 16, 2020, according to YouGov. The majority of respondents in each survey had no opinion.

But Tesla is likely to have trouble distancing itself from its chief executive if he delves further into politics in a way that risks further damaging the brand’s reputation among some U.S. consumers, said Richard Levick, chairman and chief executive of public-relations firm Levick.

More than 94% of U.S. adults are now familiar with Mr. Musk, up from about 75% one year ago, according to Mr. Marlatt of Morning Consult.

“It’s very, very hard to separate the company from the man,” Mr. Levick said. “He has a lot more critics than he used to.”

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