The Brand of Tiger Woods Remains Untouchable
When the Player Impact Program (PIP) was announced, we didn’t truly know what to expect but we were aware that this was the PGA Tour’s answer to the potentially lucrative Premier Golf League.
Money, as in any sport, dominates golf and considering prize kitties typically increase every other year, we shouldn’t be surprised to hear about alternative ventures that rely solely on financial benefits.
It’s soon time for eligible golfers who actively participated in the PIP to be rewarded, but for us to understand who will fare the most from it, it may be a good idea to recap just exactly what it is.
Player Impact Program
The philosophy is simple: whoever interacts with fans the most - and seemingly helps to grow the PGA Tour brand - would be rewarded for their efforts.
Bryson DeChambeau frequently uploads on his YouTube channel and although he may have had aspirations to do so, he was never as active as he was post-announcement - coincidence?
Originally the announcement that took place wasn’t particularly received well by golf fans; effectively, these already wealthy individuals were being paid more to be vocal about their lives.
Ultimately, the younger players were always going to be at an advantage as they grew up with social media and therefore, it comes second nature to them.
Having noted that, a certain golfer has been tipped to inherit the largest sum from the PIP money, an estimated $8 million - and he hasn’t struck a golf ball all season.
That, of course, would be Tiger Woods.
Now we have established that those who increase publicity for the PGA Tour would be rewarded, how has Woods found himself at the pinnacle of this list?
A quick browse through his social channels would indicate that he seldom posts - let alone advertises the tour that he’s called home for the last 25 years.
His brand is bigger than potentially any other sportsperson in the world - perhaps with a few notable exceptions – but we must remember that golf isn’t looked at similarly to the other mainstream sports in this country yet, everyone knows who Woods is.
In football, if a player has fallen out with a manager or the board, you’ll often hear quips of ‘no player is bigger than the club’, and you know what, they’re right.
However, in Woods’ universe, it’s difficult to determine if the same can be said - is Woods bigger than the PGA Tour? Potentially.
Is he bigger than the sport of golf itself? Again, it’s difficult to determine.
Last month marked the 25-year anniversary of Woods’ inaugural win on the PGA Tour, picking up the Shriners title for the first of what currently stands at 82 victories - a tied record for the most in history.
We only have to recollect the recent social media response to Woods holding a golf club while watching his son on the range at a junior competition to understand just how significant the brand of Woods is.
If he’s playing, then all eyes are on him; if he’s not, then fans demand to know when he’ll be back.
One thing is certain, there fails to be a more significant individual presence than Tiger Woods in golf - and perhaps there never will be.
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