Competitive Edge - Sports & Entertainment Marketing News

Callaway to ‘Pause’ Longtime Relationship With Phil Mickelson


Longtime Phil Mickelson partner Callaway said Friday night it plans to “pause’’ its relationship with the Hall of Fame golfer, who has played and endorsed the clubs since 2004.

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Discussion Questions:

  1. What is publicity?
  2. What is product endorsement?
  3. What characteristics do you think brands consider when determining which athletes and celebrities to contract to promote their products and services?
  4. Why do you think Phil Mickelson has been such a popular spokesperson for so many brands over the years?
  5. Based on information from this news story, why are sponsors cutting ties with him?
  6. Why do you think brands want to avoid being caught up in Phil Mickelson’s controversial comments from a PR perspective?
  7. Callaway is hitting “pause” on the relationship with Phil Mickelson. Why do you think they are taking that approach rather than splitting with the popular pro golfer?
  8. In your opinion, do you think Callaway should leave the door open to a future relationship with Phil Mickelson? Why or why not?
  9. Mr. Mickelson issued a public apology for his comments. Do you think that will open the door for brands to reconsider their position? Why or why not?
  10. What is crisis management?
  11. If you were a PR professional working for a brand who Phil Mickelson endorsed, what would your strategy be? Be prepared to discuss your answers in class.
Chris Lindauer
After working for nearly a decade in professional sports, Chris Lindauer, formed Sports Career Consulting to provide unique sports business education opportunities in and out of the classroom. In the eighteen years (and counting) that followed, Chris has inspired thousands of students to pursue their passions and explore the career of their dreams. He currently lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife, two teenage daughters and their dog.


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