I have a confession: I love the Olympics. From watching the parade of nations at the opening ceremony to picking up a new sport to follow (this time it is fencing), and as a Londoner I’ve been caught up in the action and the excitement of having the games in my own backyard. This year, aside from trying to see as much action in real life as possible, I’m also looking at the Olympics from a communicator’s perspective and there are a few things that I think we can learn from:
Showcase your brand’s strengths: Some have said the opening ceremony wasn’t as grand as the 2008 Beijing Olympics, but in any case it was a remarkable, fun, and skillful display of the “Made in Britain” brand and its global exports – from Her Majesty the Queen’s helicopter jump entrance alongside 007, to Mary Poppins, Lord Voldemort, classic rock, David Beckham, and the inventor of the internet.
Target your stakeholder engagement efforts: Also much has been said previously about the London 2012 logo and funky looking mascots, Wenlock and Mandeville, but as this article explains, it’s all about the symbolism behind the mascots. They are designed to appeal to a specific stakeholder demographic, the younger generation, to go with the Games’ tagline “inspire a generation” and these mascots come fully equipped with their own Twitter accounts, Facebook pages, and YouTube videos.
CEC Members: Read these FAQs for how to optimize your Twitter strategy to support business outcomes, and download a toolkit to help you put it all in action. CEC also has tools to help you build a strategic plan for engaging stakeholders through social media.
Be socially responsible: BP has created pop-out tags with QR codes that ticket holders can enter at this website and offset their carbon footprint from traveling to the games for free . Names of top offsetters are displayed on the site, to appeal to social cues and ignite a bit of competition. A fun tool to help your sustainability and CSR efforts!
CEC Members: See how leading companies are driving a strategic CSR agenda.
Be prepared: Finally, for any business in a city or country that is hosting an event of such scale, being prepared for a potential crisis is an imperative step. As many businesses around London, our office has set up a plan in place and provided employees with guidelines and remote working tools to help staff remain productive during potential disruptions.
CEC Members: Check out these issue reporting guidelines and these tips for prioritizing who to share specific pieces of information with. Also, to help you with remote access for employees, CEC has a guide to leveraging mobile technology for employee communication.
What steps have you put in place to communicate during the Games? Have you created any special campaigns around the Olympics for your stakeholders and employees? Share in the comments!
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