The 2012 London Olympics Brand Activation Index, Part 1: Three Brands That Took Home Medals In Week 1


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The first installment of the Olympics Brand Activation Index (OBAI), a look at the real impact that an investment of $400,000 per spot during the 17-day event has on a brand.

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The 2012 London Olympics Brand Activation Index, Part 1: Three Brands That Took Home Medals In Week 1

  1. 1. By Ted Kohnen, Vice President, Integrated Marketing, Stein + Partners Brand ActivationThe 2012 London Olympics Brand Activation Index, Part 1: Three Brands ThatTook Home Medals In Week 1While many of us are watching the events of the 30th Olympiad unfold, there is anotherOlympics happening. In this Olympics, it’s not about the world’s best athletes competingat the pinnacle of their sport; it’s about top brands competing for the world’s attention–and wallets. Between the record-breaking swimming events, volleyball skin games, andgymnastics pyrotechnics are 30-second spots designed to captivate hearts and minds.But did the more than $1 billion spent on Olympics advertising effectively “activate” thebrands that have chosen to compete–the way that Tom Stein defines brand activation inthis blog’s inaugural post, “Activating Brands In A Hyperactive World”?Marketers have come to realize that the real value of a strong television presence at theOlympics is not realized through 30 seconds of airtime. Even the best spot in and of itselfwill not activate a brand. But the right ad can be a catalyst for engagement that ultimatelyleads to brand activation.As a result, many of the polls, analyses, and reporting devices/meters rating ad popularityand brand impact tell only a partial story. Those systems largely communicate viewingactivity at a specific point in time. They can tell you audience size, demographics,location, and device used for viewing–but what does the audience do after thosetransfixing 30 seconds?To answer that, we’ve taken our analysis a step further. 1
  2. 2. In January, I published the inaugural Super Bowl Brand Activation Index (SBAI)highlighting the top five brands whose ad presence in the big game was transcendent.Based on our own methodology (detailed below), we ranked those brands that generatedextended and positive engagement beyond Super Bowl Sunday, thus generatingsignificantly greater value from their broadcast investments.This month, I’m back for the first installment of the Olympics Brand Activation Index(OBAI), a look at the real impact that an investment of $400,000 per spot during the 17-day event has on a brand.During and after prime-time airing, we examined what consumers did and said aftercommercials aired. Specifically, we examined branded search engine queries, tweets andFacebook posts, trending, and the sentiment (positive, negative, or neutral) of thatactivity. All data, including spend, was normalized to arrive at a fair and balanced index.On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the pinnacle of brand activation, the Gold, Silver, andBronze medal winners are:Gold Medal–Nike: Find Your GreatnessOBAI: 9.21This campaign exploded in social media and across the search engines. In a single day(July 28, the day after the opening ceremonies), Nike added 75,000-plus new Facebooklikes–besting all other advertisers. If there were a sentiment tracker that went beyondpositive to uber-positive, then Nike would get it. Most importantly, people have notstopped talking about Nike: On average, 132,000-plus additional people are talking aboutthe campaign and brand every day, which is exponentially higher than any otheradvertiser.Silver Medal–Visa: Go WorldOBAI: 9.00Visa has shown it can still captivate the hearts and minds of an audience–especially whenMorgan Freeman is the brand’s voice. Visa added 50,000-plus new fans on Facebook,and mentions of the brand across Twitter were up 27 percent. Interest in Visa and the GoWorld campaign has increased 24 percent on Google and continues to increase daily. 2
  3. 3. Bronze Medal–Proctor and Gamble (P&G): Thank You MomOBAI: 8.71Here’s one of my personal favorites. Viewers went to Google in droves looking for moreinformation about the campaign and brand, with interest increasing 32 percent comparedto pre-Olympics in the first day and then another 20 percent the day after that.Interestingly, during the events of July 31st (USA women’s gymnastics gold medal,Michael Phelps’ record breaking 19th Olympic medal, etc.) when NBC did a parentsmontage, P&G’s Facebook likes shot up by more than 13,000.Part 1 of the 2012 London Olympics Brand Activation Index covers the first five days ofthe games (July 27 to July 31). Part 2 will be a full analysis following the completion ofthe games.Methodology Overview Search volume measured across Google, Yahoo, and Bing for branded keywords and key phrases/campaign names of advertisers. Interest as measured by Google Insight. Facebook wall volume for all advertisers and percent change pre- vs. post- Olympics. Tweet volume and hashtag volume for all advertisers and percent change pre- vs. post-Olympics. Measurements taken prior, during and post U.S. primetime broadcast.Read more: 3