The superstar cyclist announced he wouldn’t fight U.S. Anti-Doping Agency charges against him. The USADA has banned him from cycling and stripped him of his Tour de France titles.
While that decision seemingly has little to do with Armstrong’s foundation or its brand, LiveStrong, which also includes a health and fitness blogging arm, it could have a huge impact. Armstrong is the public face of the foundation and he’s widely associated with yellow LiveStrong bracelets.
“Everything from here on out will be tainted, real or perceived, by the allegations,” says Marc Pitman of fundraisingcoach.com.
So what is the brand, one inextricably linked with its founder, to do? Pitman and other experts agree that the foundation’s leaders will have to at least loosen ties a little.
Managing the fallout
A lot of commentators and members of the public are going to view Armstrong’s announcement, which didn’t actually admit anything in regard to doping, as an admission of guilt, says Sean Williams of Communication Ammo.