How the Marriage of Nike and Tiger Woods Survived
After turning pro in 1996, Tiger Woods rapidly became the most famous golfer in the world and one of the wealthiest professional athletes of all time. However, he experienced significant ups and downs in both his personal life and career, including a decade from 2009 to 2019 marked by public scandal and injury. Unlike many of Woods’s other brand partners, Nike stood by the golfer throughout this time. On Masters Sunday 2019, Woods’s 15th major win validated Nike’s decision to stay in the relationship as a risk worth the potential long-term reward.
This descriptive case prompts students to consider the consumer responses that lead brands to select a particular celebrity endorser and to examine the potential positive and negative implications of continuing a partnership after an endorser is involved in a public scandal. In addition, it offers students the opportunity to consider how sociocultural context impacts consumer perceptions of both celebrity endorser behavior and related brand partner decisions, and how cultural shifts can evolve an endorser’s public image over time.
- Understand the consumer response mechanism(s) underlying a brand’s celebrity endorser decisions
- Apply brand endorser decision models to assess the likely impact of a public endorser scandal on consumer brand perceptions and the likely consequence for endorser brand relationships
- Propose a policy a company could use to make decisions regarding the future of an endorser partnership in the wake of a public scandal
- Articulate the impact of evolving social context on consumer evaluations of highprofile endorsers