I get it, I really do. I realize that TaylorMade/Maxfli signed up John Daly as an endorsee for pure marketing value. Afterall, the two-time major champion currently has limited status on the PGA Tour yet is still one of the most recognizable faces in the sport. But I question the direction of their latest Maxfli golf ball advertisements utilizing Daly and his “man of the people” image. If you haven’t see the full-length version yet you can do so here (Go Long or Go Home in the RV section) or here.
The Golf Channel has aired the commercial while CBS has refused to do so citing a standards issue. The debate over the validity of the commercial has then set off a firestorm of conversation on many online golf forums and even in the press.
True, golf is primarily a recreational pastime for the average enthusiast and I know TaylorMade needs to recoup the cost of their investment but I am sure there are better ways to get this message across then to take a multi-divorced, admitted alcoholic and put him in an ad/video that glamorizes drinking, dangerous activity on the golf course and all sorts of other questionable situations.
I am not a prude by any means but a few things struck a chord with me regarding this campaign. First off, when Ely Callaway signed up John years ago to endorse his companies’ equipment he did so to help Daly (one of the most well liked, soft-hearted, and charitable pro golfers you will find) deal with financial/personal issues including his alcoholism. TaylorMade appears to be ENCOURAGING an alcoholic to throw caution to the wind and fire back pitchers of beer at a time.
Secondly, any golf course owner will probably spit out their sandwich when they see Daly performing a semi-burn out on a golf cart, no doubt fueled by the bags of beers he appears to bring along to the course. What a great influential message for all the 16 year-olds out there who hope to one day win the British Open or PGA Championship just like Big John did. Who needs practice to make it as a pro, just grab a Maxfli ball, a bag of beer and do some donuts across the fairways!
And please John Daly, I beg you, stop trying to pretend you can sing!! Thankfully my mute button works…
Knowing a few key players at the TM/Maxfli Ball Division I am surprised by their willingness to commit to this campaign.
Yes, they are getting a lot of attention but what price will they pay for it?