London 2012

London 2012 Watch: Brand Police, Anti-Doping Ads and More

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 16, 2012 05:19 PM

You can’t stop it now. That Olympics train is running down the track and won’t be stopping till the final Royal Scone is eaten and the last big-hatted Guard struts by and the final Beatles song is sung during the Closing Ceremonies on Aug. 12. Don’t even think about getting out of the way, and that goes to marketers, too. We're watching how marketers of all sizes, official sponsors and non-sponsors, grapple with the hurdles of the London 2012 organizers' tough rules protecting sponsorships — starting with our lead story today:

Watch Out! The Brand Police Are Watching You

While there is some question on just how secure these Olympics will be, there is no doubt that this will be the most vigilant Olympics ever when it comes to fighting off any brands that are planning to use the Games as any kind of way of presenting their message if they haven’t shelled out the big bucks to allow them the right to do so.

The Independent reports that almost 300 “Olympics officers” hit the streets of the UK ("with a vengeance") on Monday, “enforcing sponsors' multimillion-pound marketing deals” and keeping a steely eye for ambush marketing. Such words as “gold,” “silver,” and, of course, “bronze” have been outlawed from any advertising. The newspaper comments, "Publicans have been advised that blackboards advertising live TV coverage must not refer to beer brands or brewers without an Olympics deal, while caterers and restaurateurs have been told not to advertise dishes that could be construed as having an association with the event."

Interbrand London's Lorna Fray, in her dispatch from London today, notes at least one non-sponsor whose signage around London might lead the casual observer to think it's an Olympics campaign: MasterCard, whose "Priceless London" outdoor marketing push "references heroes, unique experiences and London without mentioning sport or 2012" — much to the annoyance, no doubt, of official London 2012 credit card partner Visa.Continue reading...

London 2012

London 2012 Watch: McDonald's, British Airways, Nike and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 25, 2012 01:26 PM

With 32 days before the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games kick off in London....

Official sponsor McDonald's UK offers sneak peek at designer Wayne Hemingway's sustainable, Mad Men-inspired uniforms that will debut at its biggest restaurant (if for only six weeks), which is now under construction at the London Olympics Park:Continue reading...

survey says

Brand Decision 2012: Dems Are From Starbucks, Republicans Are From Dunkin'

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 14, 2012 02:02 PM

America is settling in for a long summer of campaigning between the Democratic candidate President Obama and the Grand Old Party’s Mitt Romney. News of minor flubs by candidates and those who work for them will come up at bars, barbecues, and ice-cream joints across the land (or be completely avoided, for everyone’s safety).

Americans will likely hear a constant media drumbeat about red states vs. blue states that will be so loud, it will seem that the country is about to burst into a Civil War.

Just in time for this comes a new study from Buyology that members of the two political parties don’t just disagree on their candidates. They also mostly disagree on the brands they love, though there are three that help bring them together. Next time a president wants to have a bipartisan summit of some sort, he or she might want to involve Coke, Apple, and Visa. Those three names were named by both parties as brands they love.Continue reading...

London 2012

London 2012 Watch: IOC Reviews, LOCOG Defends Olympic Sponsor Strategy

Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 22, 2012 11:01 AM

The way the world communicates with one another is ever-evolving as new technologies continue to appear and social media continues to introduce new avenues of expression. With that, brands are always finding new ways to touch their customers and all of the classic branding rules are being tossed out the window.

Olympic sponsorship has long been a way for major brands to reach consumers every few years, but international Olympic executives are looking to possibly shift how the model works in order to embrace this new world.

The sponsorship model now in place brings in $1 billion, according to the Financial Times, but the IOC is planning to “take a step back” and re-assess the sponsorship strategy going forward.Continue reading...

in the spotlight

London 2012 Watch: Sponsor Visa Opens Digital Wallet

Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 8, 2012 05:06 PM

Visa is launching a beta test of its digital wallet, branded as V.me, with online retailer Buy.com. The PayPal-esque payments system is supported by the credit card brand's new Visa Developer Center that aims to help developers in various fields from gaming, financial, e-commerce and mobile integrate V.me into their products for in-app purchases, currency or direct links to e-commerce check-out pages. 

V.me is offering convenience and "next generation commerce" to Buy.com’s 18 million customers who enter their credit card information once, where it’s stored with Visa, and then create an account with Visa, American Express, MasterCard or Discover. Users will receive alerts and near-real-time transaction notification of transactions on their Visa accounts and personalized offers will be coming soon.Continue reading...

sports in the spotlight

London 2012 Watch: BMW's Sustainable Olympics Fleet and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on April 30, 2012 06:01 PM

• BMW talks up sustainability as automaker unveils colorful designs for Olympics loaner fleet of 4,000 cars and SUVs.

• Some London residents may get missiles stationed on their rooftops as city firms up security plans.

• London mayor Boris Johnson complains that Heathrow airport chaos is damaging UK reputation ahead of the Games.

• McDonald's Coca-Cola and Cadbury criticized for Olympics sponsorship.

• Yahoo plans biggest Olympics coverage ever thanks to P&G and Visa sponsorship.

• China signs Wurth as Olympics basketball team sponsor.

• Organizers struggle to keep up with web ticket sales to football/soccer fans.

• New technology will measure impact of extra traffic on London.

mobile commerce

Barclays Expands Mobile Payments to Credit Cards

Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 19, 2012 01:27 PM

Barclays continues to innovate by taking a leading role in mobile payments in Europe. Having just launched the Pingit mobile payments app, it's now bringing contactless payments to Barclaycard, the UK's first credit card. Now, its 12 million Visa Barclaycard credit card customers can look forward to PayTag, a free sticker that enables mobile contactless transactions at more than 100,000 terminals. 

The easy-to-use PayTag sticker aims to spur the usage use of smartphones for small purchases, increasing the reach of the Quick Tap NFC (Near Field Communication) service the bank operates in partnership with mobile network operator Orange.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: BlackBerry, Burger King, BP and more

Posted by Dale Buss on March 30, 2012 08:56 AM

In the News

Apple grapples with Foxconn labor audit.

BP says Gulf oil spill was smaller than claimed.

Best Buy reboots big-box format.

BlackBerry owner RIM sees former co-CEO depart amid $125 million loss, trims exec staff, and explores strategic options including sale of Canada's troubled smartphone-maker.

Burger King sells 278 restaurants to biggest franchisee; tests new menu items; cedes U.S. crown to Wendy's; and brings lamb burgers to the U.K.

CBS and Turner boost digital ad sales through March Madness.

Chrysler unveils new spots to follow Super Bowl's "Halftime in America" commercial with Clint Eastwood.

Daimler and BYD announce Denza, a new EV auto brand for China.Continue reading...

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