Are celebrities and athletes brands? At the US Open golf tournament, Phil Mickelson completely violated one of the most basic rules of golf….”play the ball as it lies.” Phil intentionally putted his golf ball while it was still moving, likely due to his frustration with the difficulty of the golf course and his poor play, as well as him being a 6-time runner up at the US Open.
Despite his lack of sportsmanship, fans at the tournament gave him a pass, cheered him the next day, sang Happy Birthday to him, and embraced him as if barely anything had happened.
Brands constantly face challenges to please their loyal fans and supporters. In current times, when brands make a mistake, or act selfishly or greedily, Social Media pounces and brands go into crisis/PR mode.
Luckily, brands can call on research companies and social media analytic agencies to immediately assess their position, and do “damage control” and right their ship.
In the case of Phil Mickelson, he had built up so much brand equity after being on the PGA Tour for nearly 30 years, he seemingly came away unscathed, at least by golf fans.
Is your brand Phil proof?