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Marketing and Media at the World’s First Truly Multichannel Olympics

  23 July, 2012

Not the Olympics LogoWhile the butcher bullying bigwigs at Locog and the IOC have been trying transform the Olympics into an event most brands would run a mile from, the fact remains that London 2012 will be the most ambitious media event the world has ever seen. Never before has a global event been so extensively covered via so many different media channels and offered up so many opportunities for broadcasters, publishers and brands. Here we have assembled some of the more interesting media and advertising stories about what will be happening during the world’s first truly multichannel Olympics.

The Big Brands

Unruly have created an animated infographic (see bottom of this page to ) to illustrate how the leading sponsors’ video ads are faring in terms of shares. In a similar vein, Mediacom and Brandwatch have partnered to create an Olympics Buzz Board, which has been built to visualise the volume of online mentions each sponsor is receiving and to look at the sentiment surrounding the sponsors.

The Broadcasters

In the UK, the BBC has retained the broadcast rights up until the 2020 Olympics, so there aren’t going to be any live coverage advertising opportunities cropping up any time soon. However, the BBC’s plans for this year’s coverage are so ambitious that – competitors aside – few viewers are likely to complain about them holding on to the rights. The BBC will cover every event from every venue via an incredible 24 live HD streams and 2,500 hours of coverage will be made available on the BBC Sport website.

In the US, NBC Universal is working with a few partners on its online coverage. Google’s DFP will be used to serve their video advertising, Adobe has been working with them on mobile apps, and Synacor’s whitelabel TV Everywhere solution will be used for sign-on authentication, video aggregation, billing, search and DRM.  YouTube will be the live streaming platform for NBC in the US, and will also be providing video coverage of the events for more than 60 other countries around the world.

Connected TV

On connected TV, TV App Agency have created a connected TV app for Spain’s RTVE, which will be streaming the Olympics across 12 live channels. Similarly, Accedo has developed an Olympics  app for Terra (Telefónica Group), a digital media company and ISP in Latin America. The service will allow Terra’s Smart TV customers in Brazil follow the live action across 20 streams from London 2012 and share their experience within social networks through their connected TVs.

Second Screen

On the second screen, Yahoo!’s Into Now will be providing a ‘second screen TV experience that gives fans the ability to enjoy up to the minute synchronized content featuring medal counts, images from the games, schedules and athlete bios automatically synchronized with the Summer Games on the TV along with additional social experiences, including Twitter content from personalities at the games, and trivia’.

Interestingly, the Guardian also say they’re going to be offering the ‘Guardian Olympic Second Screen experience’, although it sounds suspicously like a mobile news app with a little Twitter functionality thrown in:

‘Launching in time for the Opening Ceremony, the brand new Second Screen experience will enable audiences to immerse themselves in a live, visual dashboard on desktop and iPad, to accompany and enhance their viewing of the Games. The Second Screen will display the latest from’s Olympic live blogs in addition to results, pictures, tweets, the medal table and much more, all in a stunning intuitive interface that has been designed and developed entirely in-house.’

Finally, here’s that infographic from Unruly:

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