Saturday, November 9, 2013

EA Sports & Tiger Woods Cut Ties: Is This The End Of The Tiger Woods Powerhouse Brand Name???



EA Sports began using legends
like Arnold Palmer to entice those
whose interest in TW had
disintegrated over time.
When you think of sports video games, you immediately think of EA Sports, the producer of some of the most popular video games of all-time. When you think of specific sports games, the conversation almost instantly turns to the Madden franchise. But after that, where does your brain wander? A large majority of sports gamers would probably say Tiger Woods PGA Tour. The partnership between gaming giant EA Sports and golfing legend Tiger Woods has seen incredible success that has resulted in over $770 million worth of games being sold across 14 editions of the game. That run has now come to an end as the two sides have mutually agreed to end their relationship.

            It seems like this is coming at a very interesting time as Tiger Woods has now risen back to the top of the golfing world, and EA Sports should be looking for profitable gaming lines as the NCAA Football brand has been thrown by the wayside. EA Sports is going to continue producing a golf game, but who will be the face of it now? Keegan Bradley, Rickie Fowler, and Rory McIlroy are the three most probably candidates, but the gameplay will be much more important nowadays without TW’s name on the box.

            
Young guns like Rickie Fowler were used like Arnold Palmer
as a buffer zone for those fans who were upset over TW's
recent indiscretions. Fowler, Bradley, and McIlroy will
likely all be in line to help save this brand in the future.
This break-up appeared to be coming on slowly but surely over the past few years as the last two covers depicted young star Rickie Fowler and legend Arnold Palmer instead of the man with his name on the game. While the roughly $6.2 million payday Woods receives from having his name associated with the game will not put him in a financial bind, this break-up does show how much Tiger Woods’ brand has steadily disintegrated over time. Sure, he is still the biggest attraction in the world of golf by a long shot, but the world does not seem to need him as much as they once did. The only sponsors that have stuck with Tiger through it all have been Nike and NetJets, thus depicting that he simply is not the marketing superhero he once was.

            Do not feel too bad for Tiger Woods though people. This week, he was paid over $3 million dollars to play in a tournament in Turkey and hit a golf ball from Asia to Europe, not a bad payday if you ask me. This split represents a new chapter in the lives of both EA Sports and Tiger Woods, as the gaming company focuses more on its next generation gaming and Woods' attempts to step out of the limelight and focus on taking down Jack Nickalus’ record of 18 majors. One thing is certain, the end of an era is upon us, time to take a mulligan and move on. 

The end of an era may be some level of foreshadowing for both Tiger Woods and
EA Sports, stay tuned for those developments. 
Scott Eastment is a former college baseball player and currently writes articles about various MLB, NFL, and sport business topics for Tru School Sports & Baseball Hot Corner. He has his MBA in sport business and in marketing and is an avid extreme skier. Follow him on Twitter @SportsGeek02

3 comments:

  1. There will be no face of EA Sports next golf game IMO, they'll just put whoever's hot at the time on the cover, like they do with their other sports games. Tiger, I feel, will continue to make video games elsewhere.

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  2. With how badly McIlroy has struggled as of late, it seems very tricky right now to even attempt to find a cover boy. While Fowler seems to have the look and 'sellability' for it, he just is not a good enough golfer yet. Keegan Bradley may be a good choice, but like Bubba he is not consistent enough yet. The game should just have like 5 or 6 young guns on the cover until someone really breaks through.

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  3. Without Tiger Woods Golf is incomplete.. I love to play EA Sports game and his PGA tour ... Nice game I love to play as Tiger Woods :) feeling that I am brand ambassador of Nokia Golf Store.. :)
    http://apparelnbags.com/nike-golf/index.htm

    ReplyDelete

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