Even if I wasn’t a Giants fan, I would still be a big fan of Eli Manning. How can I be so sure? Because I’m neither a Colts or Broncos fan, and I still find myself cheering for Peyton. Yesterday I talked about the Marketing Arm’s celebrity index – an index intended to measure the brand worth of a celebrity. Its a valuable tool us sport managers/marketers can use as a guide for endorsements, promotions, sponsorships, etc.
The thing is, celebrity athletes are different. They have both an influence on their team’s brand and their own brand. And while teams (for the most part) rely on performance, individuals rely on likability, personality, and even intent to do goodwill.
After Eli’s big weekend, I wonder if the Marketing Arm has plans to see what hosting SNL does to brand worth. I’m a huge SNL fan and I thought Eli did great (…for the most part)! So I’m left to wonder about several issues concerning his brand influence. What do non-sports fans now think of Eli…will they now start cheering for him and therefore the Giants? On Sundays, if nothing else is on TV, will they say to themselves, “Lets watch the Giants game!” ? What about fans from other teams? If their favorite team has a bye week, will they choose to turn on the Giants to see Eli?
So many questions, so little answers. One thing we do know is other companies are taking notice of his brand worth. Right after his stint on SNL, Reebok resigned both him and his brother (wow, how often do you say ‘him and his brother’ while referring to Eli first?) to a new deal. While Eli has been with Reebok since 2004, Peyton has been with the shoe company since 2002. Though Reebok loses the rights to NFL jerseys (which may have been a boom or bust for Nike), they are making sure they still have some kind of presence in the league. Good move.
It will be interesting to keep track of Eli’s brand value from here on out. Will he sign on with more endorsers? Will the Giants have a slightly bigger following because of his celebrity status? We’ll have to see…
Though there were a few good ones, I’ll leave you with a link to one of my favorite skits from Eli’s Saturday Night bonanza.