Personal branding: what does it even mean? For top tennis star Maria Sharapova, it means attaching your name to Every. Single. Product. you possibly can. But even the most unapologetic self-promoter must draw the line somewhere, and for Sharapova that line is the very name her parents gave her.
The world’s wealthiest female athlete may have announced her decision not to legally christen herself “Sugarpova” after the candy line of the same name. Yes, she took the time to let everyone know that she would not take the plunge after letting everyone know that she was “seriously considering” adopting the new name during the US Open. And we fell for her stunt…
The Guardian calls her strategy “shameless” but “honest”; Businessweek notes that “If you know what Sugarpova is, Maria has already won”. Twitter mentions “jumped from 50 yesterday to about 9,000 on Tuesday”, and we’re about to add one more.
Yes, it was a successful stunt. And there’s no shame in turning yourself into a commodity. The question is: when does it end? And when does it stop working?
*Photo via MariaSharapova.com