The Olympic spirit has waned among the world's advertisers, though the
flame burns bright in Australia and Brazil even as it barely glows in
Korea and Switzerland, the findings of a newly released survey reveal.
"It's not as high an interest as it has been in the past," said Gary
Burandt, the executive director of Icom, the global network of privately
owned advertising and marketing firms that conducted the survey.
"I'm not sure if that's related to 9/11 or whether it's related to
Greece and the concerns that the venues may not be ready or whether it's a
continuing malaise in the marketing communications business around the
world," Burandt said.
The run-up to the Athens
games, which begin this month, has been marred by a series of terrorism
scares, construction problems and worries about the use of performance
enhancing drugs among the athletes. When Colorado-based Icom polled its
members around the world, it found that Australia, Brazil and Italy
returned a top rank of 5 on a 1-to-5 scale rating the importance of the
Olympics with respect to advertising and promotion in their markets.
On the other end of the scale, Korea and Switzerland ranked only a 1.
"Australia is the most sports-minded country in the world and they just
hosted the Olympics last time, so that didn't surprise me," Burandt said.
"But Korea surprised me as being low because so many of the sports
shoes are made there, they have a very strong, competitive culture and
they field teams that compete very strongly," he added.
In Australia, about 70 percent of the advertising and marketing
activity immediately before and during the event is expected to be
Olympics-related while in the United Kingdom only about 3 percent will be,
according to Icom.
In the UK and some other European countries, the Olympics will be
broadcast on public television, greatly reducing advertising prospects,
while in the United States, NBC will not only show events on its flagship
network, but also on the cable channels it owns.
In the United States, where most of the major Olympic sponsors are
based and where the most advertising dollars will be spent, the level of
interest varied widely by city. Portland, Oregon, close to where athletic
gear maker Nike Inc. is based, rated a 5, even though German rival Adidas
is sponsoring the Athens games.
But in Atlanta, which hosted the 1996 summer games and where perennial sponsor Coca-Cola Co. is
based, the rating was only a 1, according to Icom.
根据Icom的调查，在澳大利亚，奥运会开赛前和比赛期间的广告和行销活动大约有70%预期和奥运有关。而在英国，这一比例大约只有3 % 。