The Value Of Celebrity

Loads of stuff about poor old Tiger.

Except that he’s not really poor at all – he made $45.5 million last year.

A bit less than his peak $100 million a year, but not too shabby.

What’s surprising is that Tiger hasn’t won a major for nine years or any tournament for four years.

Yet he still makes $45.5 million a year from endorsements.

Which makes you think that maybe golf’s sponsors don’t find the current winners worth spending a lot on.

If they did, they’d be spending their money on the current crop of champions, not a guy whose last major title was won in 2008.

It reinforces the view that celebrity is nowadays worth more than merit.



  1. Ha Ha Steve though you could just as appropriately have said UK politcs. Our pols are making a horrible mess of things over here.

  2. Yes SEPAM, it’s a curious commentary on human nature. We think we respect merit but we’re fascinated by dross.

  3. SecretEuroPatentAgentMan

    The story about “Divine Brown” shows that no matter how outrageous the story you can still endorse products and earn millions.

  4. Adrian Newey is on around $30 million a year and has been awarded an OBE. proving the very top engineers do as well as the top sportsmen.

  5. Yes indeed Steve, engineering, teaching, medicine are still areas where celebrity doesn’t mean much compared to merit. The shining example of a person who combined outstanding merit and wide celebrity is, IMHO, Gordon Moore who is known far beyond the IC industry and even beyond the electronics industry. The UK Honours System is supposed to honour people of merit but, unfortunately, it has been debauched by politicians to honour cronies and celebrities like footballers and singers.

  6. As you like to say David, it’s a funny old world. Celebrity has been worth more than merit in marketing for about 100 years or so. Movie stars have been endorsing consumer products like soda pop, cigarettes, and sports equipment for about that long, with significant beneficial effect to the advertisers’ bottom line. It’s an old standard for Mad Men style advertising but it’s never worked well in advertising products to electronic engineers. Perhaps because the industry has so very few recognizable celebrities (Bob Pease and Jim Williams are the only ones to quickly come to mind and they’re not endorsing anything these days), but more likely it’s because in the end, the component or instrument must work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *