The Game of Life

The Boston Globe today reported that Tiger Woods’ endorsements are down by $22 million since two years ago, when he was earning a remarkable $128 million dollars, according to Sports Illustrated. Ever since the news of Tiger’s infidelity in his marriage was released last fall, sponsors took the golfer out of their ads and took their endorsements away from him. From Accenture to Gatorade to Tag Heuer, Tiger Woods has been replaced with celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio. Watches can last a lifetime, but endorsements clearly do not. Leonardio DiCaprio for Tag Heuer (2010)

It’s not surprising to see Tiger Woods being taken out of global advertisements. Why would a company like Accenture, which is a global consulting firm, want someone as the face of their corporation when even his wife couldn’t trust him? Brand image, in the mind of the consumer, can be totally altered depending on the (literal) face of the product or service. If someone like Tiger Woods was the image of Gatorade, portrayed for everyone to see, who would buy the product? Would people think it was an unreliable sports drink or that it wouldn’t deliver the results that the bottle said it would? Better yet, would Gatorade see a drop in sales because of their support, or a spike?

Brand image is a seriously important thing to consider these days. If Lindsay Lohan was still making Disney movies and was associated with the wholesome children’s company – chances are, her affiliation wouldn’t last much longer. A lot of sales are driven by visuals – and in the case of Tiger Woods, once he tarnished his own personal brand, plenty of companies didn’t want his face as the visual for their product. In the business world, everyone wants respect, and if Tiger couldn’t offer a respectable persona, then he’s out. Like his slip-ups in the British Open this past weekend, Tiger Woods is having a hard time playing the game of life.

by Jenn Kearney

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