Editor's Comment: One month to the Games and crunch time for London 2012 Olympics sponsor marketers

Editor's Comment: One month to the Games and crunch time for London 2012 Olympics sponsor marketers
Editor's Comment: One month to the Games and crunch time for London 2012 Olympics sponsor marketers

It is as much a decision for a brand not to sponsor an era-defining event such as the London 2012 Olympics as it is to do so.

BT's group marketing and brand director, Suzi Williams, made this intriguing observation at Marketing's recent gathering of marketers behind the sponsorship of the London 2012 Games.

Suzi may have been talking about Diageo, whose chief marketing officer Andy Fennell revealed at the Cannes Lions Festival why the London-headquartered drinks giant passed on the opportunity to sponsor the Games.

But this get-together was about those who didn't pass, with Suzi joining marketers from Eurostar, Cadbury, Cisco, Sainsbury's, Lloyds TSB and Coca-Cola to help explore why they got on board the London 2012 juggernaut, what they've learnt in the years since signing up and what they'd do differently.

It was an achievement to get them round a table, just one month before Danny Boyle's by all accounts surreal opening ceremony unfolds.

We share their experiences exclusively with you in this week's Marketing.

The weight on their shoulders is immense. Their participation is potentially career-defining, or heaven forbid, career-limiting, depending on how they have activated their sponsorship.

Negative factors such as ambush marketing may be outside their control, but they will be judged on decisions such as where they have spent their marketing budget, including staffing those all-important social-media teams. After that, it becomes about the legacy of their activity.

Undoubtedly, mistakes have been made. LOCOG chairman Lord Coe, tireless in his praise of how brands have helped deliver the event, is frustrated at their reluctance to shout about it.

All that said, the marketers at our gathering left us in no doubt that, for them, there's no substitute for having being involved in London 2012. For London 2012's athletes and competitors, this is the time of their lives. So it is for the sponsor marketers. We wish them well.

Follow me on Twitter: @n_mcelhatton


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Lynx tells men not to leave love to fate
HBO captures awkwardness of watching sex scenes with parents
Primark to open first US stores with Boston chosen as flagship location
Marketing spend on the up but a reality check is needed before celebrating
Top 10 ads of the week: Jackpotjoy and BT Broadband fend off Kevin Bacon
Lidl beats Tesco to 10m Facebook fans
Center Parcs ad banned for encouraging parents to take kids out of school
Coca-Cola, Cadbury and Amazon named top brands for targeting youth market
Leaked document shows Nokia to be rebranded as Microsoft Mobile
Nike lays-off hardware staff in move that casts doubt on future of FuelBand
Greenpeace says save the bees or humans will die
What brands need to know about changes to VAT and online downloads in 2015
Jimmy Savile victims urged to claim compensation in new ad campaign
UKIP launches biggest  ad campaign and stirs up 'racist' accusations
Apple boss Tim Cook provides voiceover on ad touting firm's renewed green commitments
John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
YouTube reveals user habits to appeal to 'older' marketers
Ex-M&S marketing chief Steven Sharp consulting at WPP
Wolff Olins reveals new CEO after Apple poaches Karl Heiselman
Glasgow offers £30,000 prize to best digital idea for 2014 Commonwealth Games
Google's revenues surge but shares drop as it grapples with transition to mobile
Facebook beats Twitter to most 'marketing friendly' social media site crown, says DMA
Fableists believe children like Finn should be outdoors enjoying life
Homebase, Baileys and Camelot join the line-up at Media360
MasterCard renews Rugby World Cup sponsorship to push cashless message