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The Olympic Games Effect: How Sports Marketing Builds Strong Brands, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-118-17168-4
256 pages
March 2012
The Olympic Games Effect: How Sports Marketing Builds Strong Brands, 2nd Edition (1118171683) cover image


Marketing at the Olympics, the attraction and the rewards

Essential reading in preparation for the 2012 London Olympics, the newly revised and fully updated second edition of The Olympic Games Effect offers fascinating sports marketing and branding insights into the promotion of the Games themselves, and their unique attraction for corporations in particular.

The important lessons of past Olympics will be used to show a hundred year-plus tradition based on a several thousand year old testament to the love of sports and competition, revealing how, in recent years, this has evolved into a seductively attractive vehicle for a wide range of audiences, from consumers to corporations.

  • Loaded with historical information on the Olympics, the book traces the history of the Olympics back to 776 BC. This legacy is vital to the ongoing success of the Olympics, and is at the heart of why brands care so much
  • Packed with illustrations that illustrate how the Games have become arguably the world's most successful sports event and the marketing opportunities this has led to
  • Includes relevant business strategies and recommendations to help companies understand how to make more effective sports sponsorship decisions

This timely new edition of The Olympic Games Effect shows the value contributed by sponsoring the world's premier sporting event, and explains how, by extension, other global sports events have the potential to generate similarly impressive results for their sponsors.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction xi


Chapter 1 The Olympic Dream 3

Chapter 2 The Olympic Experience 15

Chapter 3 The Olympic Dynamics 35

Chapter 4 The Olympic Host Cities 47

Chapter 5 Section I Sponsorship Preparation Questions 115


Chapter 6 The Olympic Stage 129

Chapter 7 The Olympic Halo 145

Chapter 8 The Olympic Spirit 159

Chapter 9 Section II Sponsorship Preparation Questions 169


Chapter 10 The Olympic Challenges 175

Chapter 11 Section III Sponsorship Preparation Questions 185


Chapter 12 The Olympic Opportunity 189

Chapter 13 The Olympic Sponsor Case Brief: Acer 221

Chapter 14 The Olympic Sponsor Case Brief: Samsung 227

Chapter 15 The Olympic Sponsor Case Study: Coca-Cola 235

Chapter 16 The Olympic Sponsor Case Study: Visa 245

Chapter 17 Section IV Sponsorship Preparation Questions 261


Chapter 18 The Olympic Fans 267

Chapter 19 The Olympic Creative Execution 295

Chapter 20 The Olympic Marketing Communications 313

Chapter 21 The Olympic Sponsorship Checklist 337

Chapter 22 The Olympic Sponsorship Lessons 341

Chapter 23 Section V Sponsorship Preparation Questions 345

About the Companion Web Site 349

Notes 351

Index 385

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Author Information

John A. Davis is the author of several acclaimed marketing books: The Olympic Games Effect; Competitive Success; Measuring Marketing; Magic Numbers for Sales Management; and Magic Numbers for Consumer Marketing. He is a member of the marketing faculty at the Lundquist College of Business, University of Oregon. Previously, he was Dean, Global MBA Program, and Professor of Marketing at SP Jain, with campuses in Singapore, Dubai, and Sydney. In 2010, he was the recipient of the "Best Professor in Marketing" honor, awarded by CMO Asia and Asia's Best Business School Awards. Before SP Jain, he was Department Chair and Professor of Marketing at Emerson College, and Professor of Marketing Practice at Singapore Management University, where he received the "Most Inspiring Teacher" award and Dean's Teaching Honors. John regularly consults with leading global companies and is a sought-after conference speaker, including: TEDx, YPOs, Global Brand Forum, World Knowledge Forum, American Marketing Association, the Lausanne Sports Management Conference, and Entrepreneur's Organization. He has founded two award-winning companies and has led marketing teams at Nike, Informix, and Transamerica. He received his MBA from Columbia University and his BA from Stanford University.

John and his wife, Barb, have three terrific children, Katie, Chris, and Bridget. They also have two dogs, Milo and Grinner, and two cats, Spike and Zola. Grinner thinks she rules the world, and the other family pets support this delusion.

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"John Davis' book, The Olympic Games Effect, made a key contribution to understanding the economics of the Olympics, marketing of the Olympics, and the Olympic Games as a brand. The second edition of this important and readable volume offers new case studies and insights on social media. It should be required reading for corporate marketers tied to sport."
Glenn Hubbard, Dean and Russell L. Carson Professor of Finance and Economics, Columbia Business School

"Olympic marketing is fundamentally different from what is taught in traditional marketing texts, which is why this book is such a welcome addition to marketing knowledge. This edition contains updates with new observations from the Beijing and Vancouver Olympics. It explores the significance of the latest shifts in marketing derived from such trends as the rise in social media."
Lynn Kahle, Giustina Professor and Head, Dept. of Marketing, Lundquist College of Business, University of Oregon

"The sponsorship of the Olympics has been a critical part of the marketing success of many global companies including Samsung. As South Korea prepares for the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics Samsung and scores of potential sponsors will be debating the right strategy on how to leverage those Games to help communicate their brands. Worry no more as John Davis' The Olympic Games Effect will become the key 'go to' resource for these companies."
Dae Ryun Chang, Professor of Marketing, Yonsei University

"As a fellow International Olympic Academy faculty member and professor of sport management, I can write that John Davis' book should stand as a required companion piece to Dick Pound's Inside the Olympics in helping a very wide population grasp the Olympic Games' magnitude and global importance. The Olympic Games Effect is well written, thoroughly researched, and greatly adds to the canon of Olympic literature. It is heroic, like a true Olympian, in its commitment and achievement."
Rick Burton, David B. Falk Professor of Sport Management at Syracuse University and author of the historical thriller The Darkest Mission

"Just follow John Davis into the fascinating world of the Olympic Games and the enormous potentials they offer as a powerful global brand. Learn more about the opportunities and risks of Olympic sponsorship and how the pure idea and image of the Olympic Games create value for everyone involved."
Professor Dr. Anton Meyer, Head of Marketing Department, Munich School of Management, LMU

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Case Study 1
Lenovo's TOP sponsorship for the Summer and Winter Olympic Games from 2004 to 2008
271.97 KB Click to Download
Case Study 2
John Hancock's TOP sponsorship for the Summer and Winter Olympic Games from 1993 to 2008
249.24 KB Click to Download
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Press Release

July 27, 2012
How Sports Marketing Builds Strong Brands

At their core, the Olympic Games are about athletes and athletic competition. But the Olympics have evolved into a much larger phenomenon that extends beyond the boundaries of sport.  More than any other mega-sports event, the Olympics foster international goodwill by bringing diverse countries and cultures together for a unique shared experience. The rich, historical legacy of the Olympics, when combined with a potential viewing audience of over 4.5 billion people, creates a one-of-a-kind and highly beneficial sponsorship opportunity for companies striving to set themselves apart from the competition.

In preparation for this year’s 2012 London Olympics, John A. Davis’ book, The Olympic Games Effect: The Value of Sports Marketing in Creating Successful Brands, Revised and Updated (Wiley; March 2012; Paperback; 978-1-118-17168-4; $29.95), features new content and data from the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, and the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in 2010.

The book delves into how, in recent years, the games have evolved into a seductively attractive vehicle for a wide range of audiences, from consumers to corporations, and the impact each Olympics had on the city and nation where the Games were hosted. From illustrations that show how the Games have become arguably the world's most successful sports event, to an explanation of the bidding process that examines the companies that have benefited from sponsoring the events, The Olympic Games Effect highlights the important lessons of past Olympics.

Davis provides readers with useful business strategies and recommendations on how to make more effective sports sponsorship decisions, whether they are Olympics-scale or smaller. He reveals the successes and pitfalls of Olympics marketing, encompassing the study in five parts:

  • History, Legacy, Tradition – Why the Olympics have grown to become the global phenomenon they are today and how this reputation was built
  • Success and Achievement – How companies associating with Olympics success can have an obvious positive and long-lasting impact on their branding
  • Controversy and Challenge – What are the controversies and potential risks corporate sponsors face
  • Reputation Development – New chapters including The Olympics Partner (TOP) sponsor case briefs and case studies on four selected TOP sponsors: Acer, Samsung, Coca-Cola and Visa; featuring the sponsorship programs they have developed over the length of their association with the Olympics
  • Olympic Marketing Victory – How to design sponsorship program plans based on clear understanding of fans, creative execution, and marketing communications

“For companies, part of the allure of sponsoring sports in general, and the Olympics in particular, is knowing that the unexpected could and does happen, bringing added attention and interested to that event and their efforts associated with it” says Davis. “In addition, developing recognizable distinction includes associating your company with other prestigious organizations and events, and few are as powerful and meaningful as the Olympics.”

The Olympic Games attracts fans from all over the world with a diverse range of interests, from passionate love of sports and competition, to fervent nationalism, to the thrill born of uncertainty, and brings the world together for 2 weeks every 4 years.  Davis’ insight examines why companies vie to be an Olympics sponsor and the tangible and intangible returns they reap for their investment. 

For additional information about Davis and his book, please visit www.brandnewview.com

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The Olympic Games Effect: How Sports Marketing Builds Strong Brands, 2nd Edition (US $42.00)

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