Advertising for the Olympics is second only to advertising done during the super bowl. Marketing agencies across the country are pulling up a chair and grabbing their popcorn to watch. This year, the marketing changes put in place by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) will make it one we can’t forget.
Exclusivity Is No More
For years brands like Coca Cola, Nike and McDonalds had a “You can’t sit with us!” kind of attitude. These 40 official Olympic sponsors created a blackout for all other advertisers. The other advertisers weren’t allowed to use the athletes or any Olympic intellectual property that might detract from these few special weeks. Athletes couldn’t even tweet a “Thank you!” to their promoters if their sponsors weren’t part of the special 40 club.
After complaints from athletes who pointed out that this was the only time the great people of America know their names, the IOC made the decision to even the playing field for other advertisers. Marketing agencies that represent these athletes now have the opportunity to feature them in generic ads throughout the entirety of the summer Olympics.
Companies like Under Armor are shouting for joy. Under Armor supports 250 athletes during the games. They have already included Michael Phelps in their newest “Rule Yourself” campaign.
Step Your Game Up
Some are complaining that evening the playing field is going to ruin the prestige that came with being part of the exclusive 40. The toughest of the marketing agencies are saying, “Bring it on.” No, I’m not quoting the cheerleader movie (Go Toros!).
Top agencies are promising to fight for the customer’s attention. Great advertising campaigns are more important than they ever were before. Who will get the gold and who’s about to belly flop? Turn off “Pokemon Go” during the commercials, because you are bound to see some legendary material.