What To Do When Your Celebrity Endorser Has A PR Crisis

Tiger Woods Gilette TBI

Sponsoring a celebrity is a fantastic way to increase your brand exposure and put a famous face to your company’s values.

It can also be disastrous if that individual screws up.

For instance, Tag Heuer, Gillette, Accenture, and others probably thought an endorsement from Tiger Woods was a no-brainer: Woods always maintained a reputation for being focused, likable, and well-respected, which differentiated him from many professional athletes today. Plus, he’s the best golfer in the world. Who wouldn’t want his wholesome and world-renowned face all over their ads?

Unfortunately, as we found out, that sparkling persona came crashing down earlier this month. As the world was inundated with images of mistress after mistress, the brands associated with Woods were also thrust into the limelight and forced to comment.

Some chose to cut ties, while others stood by their beleaguered endorser. All were judged for their actions.

What is the best way to respond when the person you sponsor does something that could tarnish your brand? We spoke to a few PR firms that specialize in crisis management and got their advice on what a sponsor brand should do in situation like this.

Here’s what they had to say >

What's the first thing a sponsor should do?

Is it a bad idea to stick with the individual through it all?

Is it possible to backtrack if you mess up your response initially?

How can a brand repair its reputation after an endorser crisis?

Now that you know how to handle a crisis, check out...

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