Tiger in the Tank
In a PR crisis, fire off an SOS to a consummate PR organization—Edelman, Ruder Finn, Hill & Knowlton or Bob Dillenschneider—and let a professional take charge.
Alas, Mark Steinberg’s piece of the annual revenue from Tiger Woods’ sponsors must be somewhere between $10 million to $15 million. Would he not want to try and hang on to at least some of this gravy by hunkering down and hoping against hope all the other shoes don’t drop? In short, isn’t Steinberg’s agenda at variance with Tiger’s?
But in the hierarchy of loyalty in business, the customer is first. Woods’ sullen seclusion, silence and inaction subjected his remaining sponsors to the equivalent of death by a thousand cuts. That’s no way to treat a customer.
On Dec. 17, a number of sources stated that Elin Woods was planning to file for divorce and move to the new home she recently purchased in Sweden under her own name.
This is the best possible outcome for Tiger. After a decent interval, he can emerge from exile and go on Oprah, Dr. Phil and/or Charlie Rose to confess that he was a sex addict and is undergoing treatment. Whereupon a prurient and forgiving public would gush, "Oh, he’s a sex addict and he’s getting help. Isn’t that wonderful!"
Gradually he can begin to get on with his golf and hopefully start winning again. Imagine the media frenzy and TV ratings that his first forays back into professional golf would spark. New sponsors will show up on his doorstep, his career will once again take off and he will be bigger—and richer—than ever.
P.S. For what it’s worth, in the Chinese calendar, 2010 is the year of the tiger.