Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Olympics Bad Idea Jeans

Over the last year I had the opportunity to work with TOROC (the Torino Olympics Organizing Committee) and thankfully every thing went smoothly in regards to marketing, PR and sponsorship issues. Some of my peers have been working with BOCOG, the Beijing Olympics Committee, and have been dealing with a variety of different challenges. If this blurb in the Wall Street Journal is correct, things could get dicey for sponsors of the 208 Beijing Olympics.

"Marketers' efforts to grab a piece of China's 2008 Olympic Games have begun in earnest--and they're beginning to set new standards. For example, tradition calls for category exclusivity for most sponsors. There is usually only one credit-card sponsor, one wristwatch marketer, etc., allowed to put its brand on the Games. Not this time. The 2008 Games already boast three official beers: Tsingtao, Yanjing and Budweiser. "One beer cannot cover all China," says Liu Jun, deputy director of marketing of the Beijing Organizing Committee, or Bocog. China's huge number of beer drinkers and the fragmented market justified the triple play. Plus, each beer company has established a different target audience."

As a former Manulife employee (Manulife is a sponsor of the 2008 Olympics) I can guarantee they would not be a happy camper if another insurance company were allowed to be an official sponsor of the Olympics. Companies pay at a minimum, 30 to 40 million for category exclusivity to be a sponsor of the Olympics. If you are the sports marketing exec, your company purchased category exclusivity, are you going to allow another competitor to be at the Games? I don't think so.

I bet visitors at the Beijing Games are going to see guerilla marketing like it has never been presented before. Sponsors, who are cut throat to gain market share in China are going to walk over each other.

BOCO MUST nip this in the bud immediately and ensure category exclusivity is still in place...


At 12:35 AM, Blogger Patterson said...

Answer me this: TOROC - TORino olympics Organizing Committee...okay, close enough, I get it. But what the heck does BOCOG stand for?


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