Free Essay: Brand Promotion in the Olympic Games
Entrepreneurship has undergone tremendous changes as organizations focus on making a profit, through a wide range of strategies. While this is the case, making profits is never an easy task, as it has several difficulties. To gain a competitive advantage in the business world, most firms use promotional strategies. This guarantees them a strong image for their brands even on an international scale (Rajagopal, 2007). Nonetheless, many people do not understand the meaning of brand promotion, including what it is and what it encompasses.
Brand promotion works towards ensuring that a company registers high profits from selling products, through an expanded market share (Berk, Harald & Carl, 2006). This takes several processes. For instance, manufacturers use newspapers, magazines, social media, and television for effective brand promotion. This is mainly through adverts. Thus, the media is undoubtedly the best method of executing brand promotion in the Olympic games.
Besides the use of media to enhance the brand promotion, companies also use sports and sportsmen. Here, manufacturers or brand owners sponsor sporting events or athletes as a way of promoting their products (Beech & Chadwick, 2006). Throughout history, companies sponsor sporting events like World Cup, European Football League, and Olympic Games among others. Brand owners focus on these events because they command a fanatical following in the world.
It is worth noting that a company that promotes its brand through sports is likely to experience a wide range of advantages. The main advantage of promoting brands using sports is that such campaigns reach massive customers across borders (Davis, 2002). Additionally, companies use sportsmen and women in brand promotion. This happens when renowned sports personalities become customers and buy products from specific manufacturers. Thirdly, sports events like Olympic Games help in enhancing brand loyalty among customers as the brand gains a positive attitude in the market.
While brand promotion through sports has a wide of merits, this approach could also have negative effects. For example, sports events are at liberty to promote brands of similar products from different manufacturers. This leads to stiff competition and could stifle efforts to realize high sales and profits in the end. In some cases, sports events fail to attract viewers and fans because of poor planning and organization. These misfortunes may have detrimental effects on sponsors as the events may have no impact on promoting the brand in the market.
Additionally, manufacturers spend a lot of money on promoting their products through sports events. This is because organizers of such events charge exorbitant prices to promote products. Because of the high cost of promoting events, some companies end up making huge losses instead of making profits. In some cases, it is possible for teams or individual sportsmen to comprise the original promotional agreement. A good example would be a scenario where athletes refuse to use jerseys bearing brands of certain manufacturers. When parties fail to honor the promotional agreement, it may result in losses or a negative brand image. It, therefore, suffices to mention that brand promotion using sports faces a series of challenges. This research paper focuses on how Olympic Games play a major role in brand promotion, including ways in which this international event has failed to promote company brands.
It is doubtless that Olympic Games have existed for several years, where fans of different sports get entertained. Besides entertainment from fascinating sports, Olympic Games remain an avenue to promote products from different manufacturers. Recent Olympic Games were held in London in 2012, where teams from all over the world attended. The global attention that Olympic Games receive inspires companies to advertise their products. In most cases, only multinationals promote their brands because they have a global customer reach and can afford the high cost of brand promotion. For example, Coca-Cola was a major sponsor of the event. Besides this, Coke Cola was the main sponsor of the World Cup in 2010 in South Africa.
It is important to note that these initiatives have been instrumental in enhancing Coca-Cola’s sales throughout its history in sponsoring sports (Davis, 2002). Besides Coke, other multinationals like Barclays and Standard Chartered Banks actively sponsor these events with the aim of promoting their products and services by attracting more customers from all over the world. Besides winning more customers, these companies assured their loyal customers of their ability to compete favorably with other multinationals.
Even though companies derive profitable value in promoting sports events like Olympic Games, most people do not have a clear understanding of this approach. Notably, brand promotion through sports takes place in different ways. Firstly, companies focus on sponsoring specific events like Olympic Games, which have a global following and recognition. Firms target high returns when sponsoring sports events. Sponsorship takes different forms like banners, posters, and billboards, which advertisers exhibit in stadiums during competitions. Such marketing strategies usually attract customers and strengthen the image of the brand in the market.
Secondly, some companies opt to sponsor specific teams during Olympic Games. It is usually evident from the jerseys and other sporting kits that teams use. For example, football teams from various countries, which take part in Olympic Games, use T-shirts, which bear labels from different companies. LG Electronics, Samsung and Sony are leading companies, which embrace brand promotion during Olympic Games. When a team uses jerseys with these labels, it is always a sure way of convincing fans and customers of the strength of the brand in the market. This remains a successful strategy of brand promotion on an international scale.
Thirdly, many TV channels worldwide get the rights to air live matches during Olympic Games since it draws the attention of the world. With this provision, fans who cannot afford to watch live matches get the entertainment at the comfort of their living rooms. However, this is through agreements between sponsors of Olympic Games and Global TV channels, requiring Channels to air adverts of companies sponsoring the event. Thus, firms are able to reach a global market through TV ads, which run in between matches, before or after a specific competition. This is crucial in strengthening the image of the brand and improves sales.
Among other advantages, TV adverts reach many people at once. For example, SuperSport Channel advertises Guinness products during live competitions through an agreement. Consequently, Guinness is able to promote its brand and win more customers from all over the world, making it one of the leading beer brands in the world.
It is worth noting Olympic Games have played an important in redefining brand promotion in the world today. Multinationals exhibit their power through such initiatives, making their products and services more likable in the market. However, history is replete with cases where brand promotion during Olympic Games has had positive and negative effects. From a positive perspective, brand promotion through Olympic Games has helped companies to increase the number of their customers.
When an organization sponsors a successful sporting event, more people always want to associate with such companies, thus strengthening the corporate image. Coca-Cola is a good example of multinationals, which have sponsored successful international sporting events. This explains why the company continues to enjoy a massive following with a strong brand name, which guarantees high sales. This has also contributed to its ever-growing global membership.
Most companies, which sponsor Olympic Games further, experience high sales. Besides Coca Cola, Omega, Acer, Samsung, Atos, Adidas, McDonald’s, and British Airways also sponsored the Olympic Games of 2012 in London. This, according to records, was one of the most successful events in history largely because of the reliable sponsorship it received from these multinationals. Most of the companies registered increased sales in 2013, a clear indication that sports events are effective in brand promotion.
Besides increased sales and profits, sponsoring Olympic Games has helped companies gain international recognition (Kurtz, 2010). For example, brands that were less known in the market before the 2012 Olympic Games in London gained stronger brand names. Moreover, their sales increased significantly after the successful event. For instance, Omega and Atos lacked international recognition in the developing world prior to the Olympic Games but improved significantly after sponsoring the events in London (True, 2006).
As a result, Acer expanded its market coverage to less-developed nations of the world in 2013. This implies that Olympic Games contributed to its global recognition and acceptance by customers as one of the best electronic companies in the world. Equally, Atos had minimal sales before the 2012 Olympic Games. It mainly focused on the European and American markets before expanding its target market to less developed economies. Thus, Olympic Games worked well for Atos by handing it global recognition.
As mentioned before, the use of the Olympic Games in brand promotion is a double-edged sword. For instance, this strategy did not work for some of the companies, which took part in the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Firstly, the event attracted too many sponsors from all over the world. Thus, customers from all over the world had a hard time selecting their preferred company. This was hectic for many companies as there were firms offering the same products. This discouraged effective brand promotion because of unnecessary competition.
Another flipside of sponsoring Olympic Games to promote brands is that it could be too expensive to make profits thereafter. For example, major sponsors like Coke, Adidas, Acer, Panasonic, Samsung, and Atos signed a $100 million deal each to sponsor the event. This was way too expensive and discouraged firms that had fewer shares in the sponsorship of the event in London. In addition, some brand promotion agreements between companies and teams did not work as some athletes compromised the agreement. A case in point, some teams rejected jerseys carrying specific brands from manufacturers.
In summary, brand promotion during sporting events like Olympic Games and World Cup has proved to be effective. This approach helps in brand recognition, increased membership, and improved sales, which translate into profits. Additionally, it promotes higher demand as companies gain international recognition and seek to expand their market reach (Kurtz, 2010). While this is the case, brand promotion in major sporting events faces an array of challenges like stiff competition from other firms, high cost of sponsorship, tough sponsoring conditions, and failure by sporting teams to honor the promotional agreements.
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