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Is Sha' Carri Richardson Bad for Business? The Pros and Cons of Protecting Your Brand

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Is Sha’ Carri Richardson Bad for Business? The Pros and Cons of Protecting Your Brand

Today, Lanee Javet, Madam Prezident and Faye Bishop discuss the saga of Sha’Carri Richardson and what her debacle means for her business brand.

Sha’carri had lucrative endorsement deals with both Apple and Beats by Dre, both of whom chose to double down on their sponsorships of her. According to Ad Week:

“That left potential partners Beats and Apple with a decision to make: stick by the embattled athlete or cancel the nascent project. Executives, without hesitation, determined they would forge ahead—and even broaden the effort’s scope and scale.

I was surprised, relieved and honestly grateful that Beats still believed in me and stood behind me.

—Sha’Carri Richardson
“We said, ‘No way we’re pulling the plug—we’re going to double down,’” Chris Thorne, CMO at Beats, told Adweek. “This is the type of person that Beats runs toward, even if other brands choose to run away.”

Richardson, who broke the news of her suspension to the companies ahead of the headlines, had braced for the worst.

“I was surprised, relieved and honestly grateful that Beats still believed in me and stood behind me,” the Dallas-born runner told Adweek.

‘Live Your Truth‘
The resulting campaign, “Live Your Truth,” hyped the new Beats Studio Buds, but ended up serving multiple purposes for the brands, which brought on hip-hop mogul Kanye West as composer and editor. The soundtrack, made up of new and unreleased music from West, announced the artist’s long-awaited album, Donda, and its livestreamed listening sessions.

“That’s a lot to do in 60 seconds, but I’m a fan of combining messages,” Jackson said. “And we were trying to make something thoughtful, where each message had deep cultural relevance.”

Since that time #ShacarriRichardson has been hit with a great deal of controversy for being a sore loser, and some wonder if Sha’Carri will ever be able to get an endorsement deal again.

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