Social stories: The Olympics

5 minute read

On July 6th 2005 London won the bid to host the 2012 Olympics and today marks exactly a year until the games begin. The Olympic sites are making progress and tickets have already gone on sale. The question is how has this pivotal sporting event been using online marketing to build hype for July 2012?

Main website – the focus point

It’s pleasing to see the ‘official’ website right at the top of Google search results. The website is jammed packed with information, images, ticket details, merchandise – the list is endless. If you want to find out more about the events this is where to go. As a fan of all things social it’s good to see all the social icons right at the top of the page. It’s not  just ‘like’ and ‘follow’ buttons either, there’s also Google’s +1 and YouTube and it certainly feels like all marketing channels have been considered.

What about email?

A link to sign up to their email newsletters is on the homepage of their website and they’ve used the data capture form to find out what topics were of interest to me. Since signing up I’ve received a couple of emails, both really nicely branded and just a couple of days ago I received one telling me it’s almost a year to the Olympics. For anyone excited about the Olympics, the hype begins now. There’s also been other press coverage surrounding the year countdown and it certainly feels like they’re steadily increasing their marketing activities across all means available.

Watch it online

Looking at the London 2012 team’s YouTube channel there are currently over 130 videos and the page has had over 2 million views – pretty impressive. The first thing I looked for was a title or promotional video, which I found, and watching it made me appreciate how much work is going into these events. The videos vary, from promotional materials to lots of famous faces talking about the Olympic park and what’s to come. Love or hate it, they’ve cleverly used the YouTube channel to really bring the events to life. It’s also very patriotic and videos are really helping to push the message that this is a big event, it’s coming to London and we should be excited. Videos are a great way for any business to visualise their message.

Facebook and Twitter

A quick look at the numbers and you can see both pages are popular; they have over 100,000 Twitter followers and almost 150,000 Facebook fans. Both pages are jam packed with information but I was slightly disappointed with the lack of personality that shone through, especially when considering their YouTube channel. They didn’t appear to be interacting with people and this would be nice to have seen. It must be said that both pages are branded really nicely with useful links to their website. If you are interested in learning more about the events you’re not likely to miss anything by liking or following these social media pages.

What we can learn from the Olympics

Looking at all the different channels they’re using, the YouTube page really grabbed me and this is where I learnt a lot. Not just about the events, but the people taking part and the people supporting the build up to this historic event. For any business videos can be a great way of showing some personality behind your business and promoting the products and/or services you’re selling. There’s always a place for text content – the Olympic 2012 website being the key place for this, but the personality of the events has nicely shown through on their YouTube channel. It’s certainly something I’ll be keeping an eye on.

The question to leave you with is how much interest are you paying to the Olympics heading to London? Are you watching the build up online? Let us know what you think of their online activities so far in the comments box below.