I spoke to a couple people yesterday who were surprised that Brett Favre’s Wrangler jeans spots were still running. Surprised that he was still on their Web site. They were surprised that Wrangler had no comment.
Well, I’m not.
Put yourself in their shoes, or jeans.
You have an athlete who you’ve worked hard to connect to your brand. And, unlike many of the endorsement deals out there, it fits.
Then this story comes along, where Favre might have strongly come on to a woman who was paid to do in-stadium sideline and Jumbotron reporting for the Jets when he played there.
There are voicemails and pictures of private parts, allegedly his.
Partly as a result of the media age we live in, these pictures are released to the public. The NFL has to look into it because Favre and the woman he approached, Jenn Sterger, were both paid by the Jets.
But where does that leave Wrangler?
Well, let’s say worst-case scenario the voicemails are from Favreand so are the pictures. Maybe Favre’s not the clean family man we pictured him to be, but there’s nothing there that makes it a natural for Wrangler to sever its deal with him.
If all this is true, is it a put off to his reputation? Sure it is. But you don’t have evidence of adultery and no crime was committed. Kobe Bryant lost his endorsement deals because he was charged with a crime (the criminal case was later dropped and the civil case was settled). Tiger Woods lost endorsement deals because he was unfaithful to the hilt. His ads didn't include his wife, but companies like Gatorade , Accenture and AT&T clearly thought that he wasn't the man that they invested in.
Maybe there’s more to come. Perhaps there are women out there who are willing to say that Brett Favre was unfaithful to his wife with them.
But until then, even with the NFL investigation, it’s at most the story of a high-profile man whose over-the-top pickup lines years ago were snagged by the media and put out for all to see.
That's why there's more to wrangle with for Wrangler than the public is giving the brand credit for.
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