…Dr Dre Beats headphones!
Yes, the much anticipated wait is over for the first ambush marketing campaign of the London 2012 Olympics. Earlier this week a Beats representative apparently visited members of Team GB with gifts of specially made red, white and blue Beats headphones. Diver Tom Daley was seen wearing them poolside, while tennis player Laura Robson and footballer Jack Butland tweeted about them. Well done guys! Beats obviously decided that the positive brand exposure will outweigh any financial penalty thrown at them.
LOCOG has yet to make any comment on this so maybe the sting has gone out of their tail with the success of our Olympians taking centre stage.
Now I know everyone thinks the award should go to Nike for their new global ad campaign ‘Find Your Greatness’ but LOCOG and their legal team have decided that it’s not contravening regulations, and so it isn’t officially ambush marketing. Very clever of Nike, though, to create a campaign that takes them right up to, but not over, the line.
And there are a couple of possible runners up for the ambush marketing award, but they have yet to be confirmed as official entries:
Oddbins has been running an in-store campaign offering up to 30% discount to customers who turn up wearing non-Olympic sponsoring brands (see below).
LOCOG is looking into this and the MD of Oddbins, Ayo Akintola, was recently quoted as saying, ‘We have taken steps to ensure our planned window displays do not flout any of these asinine rules, but we are doing this primarily to highlight the absurdity of the fact that the British people - who are paying for these games - are at the same time being subject to ridiculous rules. Even though our window designs will be within the rules, we would not be surprised if LOCOG goes loco.’
Not averse to ambush marketing and its penalties (remember Nicklas Bendetner’s lucky pants at Euro 2012?) Paddy Power has been running billboard adverts claiming to sponsor a major sporting event in London…France. Tee hee (see right). But this is one battle LOCOG has officially lost.
And finally, Australian BMX cyclist tweeted this picture (see below) of a bucket of, ahem, Kangaroo condoms (‘for the gland down under’). Ooh, that’s got LOCOG a bit hot under collar. Not because their condoms but because Durex has the condom supplier rights and has given 150,000 of them free to 10,800 athletes. Stop sniggering at the back!