Friday, September 02, 2011

Tiger Woods' status is down: Protecting your "brand"

Spotted this interesting piece of research in my daily news feed:

STILL REELING from missing the cut at the PGA Championship in Atlanta, Tiger Woods and his new agency are having to face the reality that he may be damaged goods as a sponsorship ambassador. A study from Ipsos Mori has found that almost a quarter (23%) of US consumers considered switching from brands that he endorsed following his admission of extra-marital affairs. Sponsors are often advised to stick with tarnished properties and contribute to the reform of a sport or athlete but this latest data shows Gillette, Accenture, Tag Heuer, Gatorade and AT&T were right to ditch the golf star to protect sales. Wayne Rooney was next in the survey with 14% of consumers in the UK saying his off-field antics would cause them to switch brands but this response was much higher in the developing world. Consumers in fast-growing markets like India and China were reported to be much more sensitive to the bad behaviour of endorsing athletes with up to two-thirds prepared to shun products backed by fallen stars.

There's a ton of truth packed in this telling report.  We may not be Tiger Woods and our audience may not be tens of millions, but each of us represent our own "brand."  That's important to remember as we walk and talk the endurance sport game.  People are watching and we have the potential to affect others.

Just like Tiger, we at times we need to pick up the pieces and start over.  I'm not always at my best and want to work harder to deliver a consistent message within a positive "brand" image. That's something to ponder during this period of injury and recovery.  I need to tell a a good story while rebuilding. It's not easy, but it's the right thing to do. 

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