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28/08/2012 by

Why Brands Like Nike Stick With Armstrong?

Lance Armstrong achieved the impossible. Three times! In this article you will learn why brands like Anheuser-Busch, Oakley and Nike stick with Armstrong…

While one of the greatest athletes on earth is being stripped from his eternal glory and fame, big sponsors stick with Lance and ride with him through hell and back.

Would the US Anti-Doping Agency’s move be able to break Armstrong? Would your brand have shown Lance similar love and loyalty? Read the insights in this shocking story…

He may be one of the greatest athletes of all times. And sorry for Nike, I will use Adidas’ tagline here: Impossible is nothing. Certainly not for super hero Lance Armstrong.

He achieved the impossible 3 times:

Firstly, Lance won the Tour de France 7 times, in a row. From 1999 until 2005 this phenomenon ended the Tour in yellow.

Secondly, Lance is diagnosed with cancer. Doctors tell him that his survival ratio might only be 40%. Lance encounters the fight of his life – and fight for his life – but Lance wins again and survives.

Thirdly, Lance starts the ‘Lance Armstrong Foundation’. The Foundation’s LiveStrong campaign has raised nearly $500 million to fight cancer. A very important reason why Nike sticks with Lance today.

Also afore mentioned other sponsors are standing behind Lance united, even despite the latest blood-doping allegations. The same sponsors stick with Lance when the US Anti-Doping agency’s decides to ban Armstrong from competition for life, stripping him of his 7 “golden bikes”.

Nike’s swoosh stood by Lance, as it did before with golf miracle Tiger Woods, and Basketball superstar Kobe Bryant. Don’t you just love Nike’s loyalty? I feel Nike has really earned its tagline Just Do It several times.

Mr. Chibe from brewer Anheuser-Busch stated in a recent interview: “Our partnership with Lance remains unchanged, since he has inspired millions with his athletic achievement and his commitment to helping cancer survivors and their families.”

Oakley said in a statement it “supports its athletes who respect and honour the ethics of sports until proven otherwise.”

Yes, I have read that sport marketing experts in the US have stated: “The bad news is that Mr. Armstrong’s positive ratings with consumers were dropping, and his negatives are climbing, even before the latest controversy”.

So I have been annoyed by some negative hashtags on Twitter like: #CheatStrong and #LiveWrong. Innocent until proven quilty is applicable in real life, but not in social media?

But I have nothing but respect for Lance Armstrong, and feel that the US Anti-Doping agency should be ashamed about their approach towards Armstrong.

Most of all, I would like to thank Anheuser-Busch, Oakley and Nike for sticking with Armstrong. It has really revealed the DNA of your brands, and clearly shown how authentic you are.

Now I would love to hear your vision on Lance or the loyalty of his sponsors.

Follow Igor Beuker on Twitter or join our movement on Facebook. Believe us: other inspiring and fun content to interact with.

Source: AdAge.


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