This is a case that looks in to the rise and fall of olympic Gold medal winner Micheal Phelps. He competed in four Olympic Games And the swimmer bagged 22 Medals including 18 gold medals. Micheal Phelps who studied marketing and management from the University of Michigan sat down with his swimming coach Peter Carlisle and manager Bob Bowman and sketched out a strategy to monetize his success in swimming, there step by step planning, hard work and execution, earned them lot of fame and money via endorsements especially to Micheal Phelps. However when a British tabloid published a photo showing Phelps smoking a bong his fall started, two arrests for driving under the influence (DUI) further led to his Downfall.
1) Olympians generally do not turn in to global phenomena. One reason is that they are highlighted every four years; e.g not too many people follow competitive swimming downhill skiing outside the olympics. How did Micheal Phelps turn in to a global phenomenon?
Micheal Phelps did not achieve his success overnight. At the age of Eighteen Phelps won 8 olympic medals which made him the youngest Olympian, this propelled MP's recognition as A global Brand. Even though the team of MP, his coach and his manager had achieved world recognition very early they didn't stop there. Together they devised a plan to make MP a Celebrity or an icon, where coach Carlisle trained MP and Bowman took care of MP's marketing and promotions, an important aspect of their plan was that MP will only sign four year contract which in turn ensured that MP's fame did not die outside the Olympic timeframe. MP being active in social media also supported the cause.
2) Which approach to Strategic manager did phelps, his manager and his coach use? Why was this approach successful?
To globalize the Micheal Phelps (MP) brand MP, his coach Carlisle and his manager Bowman used the AFI frame work. They analyzed MP's physique formulated a strategy to win at the Olympics and while Bowman tried to increase MP's worldwide recognition and acceptance :-
Analyzing :- they first analyzed MP's physical attributes that gave him a slight advantage and identified his potential to achieve a greater feats. They searched for the advantages and dis advantages for athletes and found ways around it.
Formulation:- The four year contracts were one of the strategies to formulated to market MP. Similarly the decision for early retirement and comebacks were also strategies to relaunch the MP brand
Implimentation :- The hard physical training for six hours each day, launching a brand of swimming gears Called MP, signing only four year contracts were all strategies implemented to launch Micheal Phelps as a brand.
3) Phelps was embroiled in a number of controversies outside the pool. What impacts does this shortcomings have on the brand value? What do these incidents tell you about maintaining and increasing brand value over time?
The value of a brand is its consumer's perceived value. In case of Micheal Phelps(MP), his brand value was very badly affected by ethics, the kind of message he was sending to his followers or fans was questioned with the controversies outside the pool. Kellogs dropped MP because a person found smoking pot was unethical to endorse a product for children, supporting MP would have questioned Kellogs's intentions as non-condemnation of immoral or illegal activities. A brand I just not a monetary valued term, people who get connected with the brand add meaning and value to it. MP's hard work and success portrayed his as an ambassador to hard work and success. The brand value doesn't stay the same always it changes over time with market and if the value of the person endorsing the brand falls so does the value of the brand.
4) What does Phelps needs to do if he wants to play a similar transformative role in the marketing and sponsoring as Micheal Jordan achieved in basket ball?
To achieve a success like thats of Micheal Jordan, First his has to be successful in his sport. There's a reason why Michael has a very successful brand. It's because he is considered one of best basketball players ever and the greatest by many. People want to be like Michael Jordan so they will associate themselves with the same brands he does. In fact a slogan for a Gatorade commercial sponsored by Michael Jordan was “be like mike”. This is something Michael Phelps has already done; he is the most decorated Olympic swimmer of all time. He will forever be one of the greatest of all time in the sport of swimming. The second thing Michael Phelps has to do is develop a brand image and maintain that image. Michael Jordan has done this by signing other top athletes to endorse his brand. So even though Michael Jordan no longer plays basketball his brand is still represented on the court. This is something Michael Phelps could look into with his brand MP swimwear brand.
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