Great interview with the Chief Commerical Officer of the British Olympic Association here. In it he describes how the under-funded organization he was leading had to create a unifying marketing campaign to support the British Team at the 2012 Olympics.
It makes interesting reading because
- The three-pronged support for the British Team was neatly encompassed in 3 phrases: Inform, Engage, Inspire – and these gave them a yardstick against which to measure any other activity proposed. If it didn’t match up to these, they didn’t do it.
- They encouraged broad participation in the idea generation for the campaign. ”including internal brainstorms and sessions with various creative contacts who added to the general debate – out of which emerged eight candidate positionings.” I guess this was pro bono work offered by the creative teams of their major sponsors. Much like British Rowing who got a new logo from Siemens’ inhouse team, these guys would be keen to support the Olympics and their inherent marketing skill probably gave the 8 positionings quickly and at low cost.
- Market research was tagged onto another programme already paid for ”We were fortunate to be offered the opportunity to test these routes by engaging with a series of qualitative groups that Lloyds TSB were running”. So that was cheap and effectively gave the leading answer a justification.
- Back to the experts for some last minute refinement “from this emerged a favourite which was phrased “The Ultimate Team”. More debate and navel gazing led to the adoption of “our” and the less ambiguous “greatest” instead of “ultimate”. The resulting over-arching idea was ‘Our Greatest Team’. So there you go – a ready made strap line for the whole campaign.
- And a final extension into a subsidiary strap line to broaden the appeal and diffuse any criticism from minorities and funding bodies. ”with the strap-line of ‘Our Greatest Team: 900 athletes 60 million strong’. Why 900? In a ground breaking move – that seems obvious now – we invited the British Paralympic Association to join us in the campaign with one team under a combined proposition.”