Book Chapter

Sponsorship, advertising and the Olympic Games



MacRury I (2009) Sponsorship, advertising and the Olympic Games. In: Powell H, Hardy J, Hawkin S & MacRury I (eds.) The Advertising Handbook. 3rd ed. London: Routledge, pp. 129-147.

This chapter examines sponsorship and its relationship to advertising. It includes adetailed account of Olympic sponsorship in order to illustrate some of the practicalissues facing brands using sponsorship as part of a promotional strategy. Competition and complementarity Advertising is intimately linked to other promotional activities and other modes of promotional communication. Advertising has a complementary relationship to sponsorship expressed in successful integrated marketing campaigns. As one example from among many; it is by a combination of sponsorship and advertising (often in connection with the Olympics), as well as via numerous other promotional activities, that we have come to accept Visa – an abstract system for the management of credit payments – as a highly familiar global brand. To sponsor the Olympics as an official worldwide partner costs in the region of £50 million for a four-year global Olympic partnership. However, brands will typically spend three times that amount on media-based advertising around the Olympic event and in broadcast media (Davis, 2008). Visa is one of about a dozen such brands. Such activity is on a grand scale but by no means exceptional – with the Olympics just one of a number of events, large and small, serving to provide a structure and a rhythm in the promotional cycles of major global brands seeking to add value, increase recognition and enhance consumer engagement.

Publication date31/12/2009
Place of publicationLondon

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Professor Iain MacRury

Professor Iain MacRury

Professor in Comms., Media and Culture, Communications, Media and Culture