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Sponsoring an Olympics seems like a no brainer, right?

Social Media, Twitter #SochiProblems

Social Media, Twitter #SochiProblems

Being a sponsor for the Olympics seems like a no brainer. In 2012, Budweiser hosted a party and it was a hit! The U.S. men’s basketball team was on the dance floor dancing to Queen’s, “We will Rock You.”  CBS released an article stating the controversy that sponsors are facing. They said, “Several factors are casting a shadow across the Winter Olympics before the games have even began, from terrorism fears to anger over the country’s anti-gay laws.” Journalist from CBS complained about the undrinkable water and the wild dogs that are roaming the streets of Sochi. Most sponsors are staying on the sidelines with the disputes over Russia’s anti-LGBT and other human right issues. Sponsors are not sure that they want to be associated with all the problems. As the problems have become more prevalent, there has been a hashtag sent out using #SochiProblems. Being a sponsor for the Olympics is a huge investment, costing companies around $20 million dollars. Coca-Cola and Chobani are running into controversy’s regarding Sochi. Coca-Cola is struggling with the Russian culture, because their Super Bowl ad features a gay family and Russia has a law forbidding gay-right. Tim Calkins, a marketing professor at Northwestern University said,” Well, this is all just a terribly awkward situation for the sponsors.” Chobani on the other hand, is struggling with getting their products to Russia. Chobani sent over 5,000 cups of their Greek yogurt but Sochi said that they did not receive the paperwork from the U.S. that it requires.

#SochiProblems has taken off as a trending topic on twitter.  #SochiProblems already has 337,000 followers and still counting.  This account is showing its followers the baffling photos found in hotel rooms, and the 15 feet deep manholes on the streets of Sochi. One reporter tweeted pictures of light fixtures in his hotel room falling from the ceiling. This twitter page also talks about the fifth Olympic ring mishap during the opening ceremony. JonnyQuinn, a member of the U.S. four-man bobsled team was trapped in a bathroom with no phone or way to call for help. He had to smash the door open and posted the photo on twitter.

Needless to say, Sochi has been an Olympics we will never forget.

Did Christin Cooper go too far?

Miller

Bode Miller is a six time medal winner for the winter games in alpine skiing. After winning the Bronze medal this year in Sochi, Miller was interviewed by Christin Cooper. Cooper is an interviewer for NBC news. The interview with Cooper wasn’t like other interviews; this one was emotional and upsetting. Miller had been asked multiple questions from Cooper and brought up his brother who had passed away last year. Miller shed a few tears after talking about his brother who was thought to have had a seizure after a motorcycle accident.

There was controversy after this interview about Cooper pushing the limit with this interview and making Miller upset about his brother. Miller then tweeted “Thanks for all the support, today was one of the most emotional days of my life. I miss my brother.” The following tweet then said “I appreciate everyone sticking up for me. Please be gentle w christin cooper, it was crazy emotional and not her fault. #heatofthemoment.”

There were a lot of retweets and favorites when Miller posted this to Twitter. This is a perfect way that the athletes can talk back to the public by using social media in case this situation might have been misinterpreted. In this case many people thought that Cooper was in the wrong, but like Miller said it was the heat of the moment. The last tweet that was sent from Miller about the interview was, “My emotions were very raw, she asked the questions that every interviewer would have, pushing is part of it, she wasn’t trying to cause pain.”

Miller uses twitter to express his thoughts about the issue to help people understand that Cooper wasn’t in the wrong with her questioning.

 

From Sochi to Stardom

Now that the 2014 Winter Olympic games are over, it is clear that Sochi not only set the stage for athletes to be watched during their events; the eyes were also now on social media.  From simple selfies, wolf hoaxes, being trapped in bathrooms, and everything in between, the social media presence was one that has never been seen before for an Olympic games.

If you were not paying particular attention to the games, you might think that “being trapped in bathrooms” was a misprint, but it definitely happened.  U.S. bobsledder Johnny Quinn was taking a shower and when the door either became locked or jammed, trapping the Olympian inside.  Quinn then “used his bobsled push training” to escape from the bathroom, destroying the door to escape.  The bobsledder took to Twitter to share his experience, saying “I knew when I posted that photo I’d probably get a couple of retweets, a couple of funny comments, but nothing to the extent of what has happened.”  The post has received tens of thousands of favorites and retweets, making Quinn an overnight viral sensation.

Ski slopestyle silver medalist Gus Kenworthy also made a splash on Twitter, with maybe the biggest “aww” moment of the Olympics, especially for dog lovers.  Kenworthy posted pictures of himself with stray dogs, with one in particular gaining attention.  The picture is of him sleeping with his medal that he earned, and one of the puppies that he is adopting, Rosa, draped on his chest.  Kenworthy as since finalized arrangements to adopt five dogs from Sochi, four puppies and their mother.  Between winning the silver medal, and all of the great publicity from his Twitter, Kenworthy had himself an Olympics to remember.

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It was not only the newcomers that added to their followers, however.  U.S. hockey player T.J. Oshie of the St. Louis Blues, who had the big shootout performance against Russia, saw himself become an even bigger and more recognized star in the hockey world, gaining 130,000 followers since his performance.

The unique combination of social media and the Olympics this year has propelled many athletes into the worldwide spotlight, whether they won multiple medals or none at all.  This shows the great impact that social media has had on sports, and most other topics in the world.

#SochiProblems Reveals Real Problems in Sochi, Russia

Journalists, Olympians, and tourists took to #SochiProblems on Twitter to reveal the poor conditions they’ve experienced in Sochi, Russia for the Olympic Games the past two weeks.

Although the hashtag and account (@SochiProblems) are meant to be humorous, did the tweets reveal actual concern for the problems in Russia? Should journalists have taken the time to report on such poor conditions in post-Soviet Russia? Maybe all of this is just a cultural misunderstanding. Maybe living conditions were the last thing on the government’s minds, granted Russia was facing other major problems like terrorist threats and anti-gay attacks.

Here are some examples of such tweets from journalists who stayed in Sochi:

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If accommodations made for journalists and olympians were so poor, what are the living conditions for the rest of the population? Russia seemed to unintentionally portray themselves as a third-world country, possibly an indication of a much greater issue.

The Twitter handle @SochiProblems currently has 325K followers. Throughout the Olympic Games, the account has tweeted and retweeted comical tweets about the unfortunate conditions. More users seem to focus on making fun of the conditions rather than show concern, which has been insulting to many Russians.

Numerous articles have stated that #SochiProblems is more of an embarrassment for America than it is for Russia because of ignorance. (Here’s one article: http://www.policymic.com/articles/81663/sochiproblems-is-more-of-an-embarrassment-for-america-than-it-is-for-russia).

Whether the hashtag leads to funny tweets or not, in the end it reveals possible living condition problems in Sochi, Russia. Should such conditions be ignored by the rest of world or is our duty to report about it?

#CheersToSochi, Some People are Not “Lovin It”

There’s no doubt, we all know Russia’s views about the LGBT community, which has been clearly showcased for the 22 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. This of course has spiked a heated issue within the LGBT community where many people have openly voiced boycotting the Olympics in its entirety.

But, it hasn’t stopped there. Major sponsors of the Olympics, such as McDonald’s have gotten the wrath from individuals all over. People think the corporations support Russia’s views because they have signed on to be sponsors. That is not the case! Inevitably the companies are sponsors to help their brand, marketing and revenue on an international scale…nothing more!

Focusing specifically on McDonald’s, the corporation launched #CheersSochi on Twitter for people to write their support for those competing in the Olympics. However, this idea to boost Olympians confidence has turned into a way for people to further show their outrage about McDonald’s being a sponsor of the Olympics. The hashtag was later removed and #CheersToSochi was then created for people to continue their “hate.”

McDonald’s quickly responded to peoples’ tweets and concerns on the corporations website by saying the company support human rights and believe that the Olympics should be open to everyone without discrimination. The company also supports all those competing and wanted to use Twitter to simply inspire the athletes.

That statement, however, hasn’t stopped people using #CheersToSochi to bash the company for sponsoring the Olympics, which is also known as “hashtag hijacking.” It’s clear that peoples’ goals for their tweets are to show their distaste for what Russia stands for, in hopes to shed light into the LGBT community by using the hashtag #CheersToSochi.

In my opinion, I think McDonald’s is not at fault for anything, in fact, the company has shown its support for equality and tried to help our fellow Americans in Sochi by creating the hashtag in the first place. After McDonald’s posted the statement about equality on their website, people should have understood what the company stands for and stopped tweeting their anger. Instead, support Team USA with the hashtag!

So, I leave you, the reader, with the question, do you think McDonald’s supports Russia’s views?

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images]

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images]

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images]

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images

No Cable? No Problem! Stay Tuned on Twitter

Like the majority of college students in the world, I am a little low on monetary funds and have had to make some tough financial choices throughout my four years. For instance, I now only allow myself to purchase things that are on sale, sometimes I even cut coupons! One of the more difficult choices I’ve made to save money was deciding to forgo cable. I know, I know, how does she do it you ask? Well, I accomplish this feat with a great deal of Netflix and a little bit of mooching off of my friends.  However, when it came to the winter Olympics, spending every day at a friend’s house monopolizing their TV was not an option.

Luckily, the Olympics took to social media and cable was no longer a necessity to stay up-to-date on the games!

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@Sochi2014 is a twitter account created to constantly update followers on every aspect of the Winter Games. The account tweeted and posted pictures pertaining to every aspect of the Winter Games including:

  • the opening ceremony
  • the closing ceremony
  • the Sochi 2014 Bear
  • daily schedule
  • scores
  • standings
  • countdowns to events

And so much more!

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Above is an example of a daily schedule @Sochi2014 posted for its followers. Its readability and accessibility made it convenient for anyone to view and download any time of day.

@Sochi2014 also utilized hashtags and Olympian’s usernames enabling its followers to view their favorite topics and stay current on their favorite athletes:

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As well as their favorite teams:

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We are all aware that social media and the internet in general, are becoming increasingly influential and necessary to our everyday lives. However, witnessing the reach and capability of social media as a communication outlet, specifically in regards to the Olympics, still ceases to amaze me.

Without cable, I have managed to stay tuned to every event and outcome of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. What are your views on using social media to stay current on the Olympic Games? Is it just as effective, if not more, than watching each event live?

Coca-Cola Criticized for Social Media Campaign Banning the Word “Gay”

A lot of the social media buzz during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics surrounded LGBT issues and Russia’s anti-gay law. Sochi sponsor Coca-Cola was unable to escape that buzz.

Russia has an anti-gay law that bans pro-gay “propaganda” that could be accessible to minors. Critics say it is so restrictive that it forbids almost any public expression of support for gay rights.

Coca-Cola launched a social media campaign allowing users to type in their name or a message through their website and see it printed on a virtual Coca-Cola can, which they can then share with friends and followers on social media networks. Coca-Cola faced a big problem when users started to notice when they typed the word “gay,” Coca-Cola responded with, “Oops. Let’s pretend you didn’t just type that.” However, if users were to type the word “straight,” the website allowed them to.

The social media campaign was meant to send positive messages to Olympic athletes, cheering them on, but after Olympic gay rights activists hijacked their social media campaign for not supporting LGBT rights, Coca-Cola’s social media campaign went down the drain.

An organization called Queer Nation NY re-edited Coca-Cola’s famous 1971 commercial from singers on a hilltop called “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke” to scenes of protesters in Russia being attacked  for publicly expressing gay rights.

Coca-Cola responded by uploading the commercial to Facebook and adding the comment, “Cheers to the fact that a song can top the charts and be above love, equality and happiness. #AmericaIsBeautiful.” Coca-Cola’s response played on their Super Bowl campaign, America is Beautiful and Coke is for everyone and continued with #AmericaIsBeautiful throughout the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games.

Coca-cola       

Coca-cola twitter

Coca-Cola took a big hit with their social media campaign as did other big sponsors like McDonald’s and Visa, but I think Coca-Cola responded well to their crisis by applying their super bowl message to the Sochi Winter Olympics.

What do you think of Coca-Cola’s Sochi social media campaign and how they responded to the crisis?

Follow me

Early in the olympics a lot of the top events got a ton of media coverage. The games started on Feb. 6, 2014 in Sochi, Russia. Early on was the first ever snowboarding slopestyle games. With heavy coverage going on during the final run new comer and male snow boarder Sage Kotsenburg pulled out a great run and won his first gold medal.

Most of these athletes have twitter accounts to respond to any fans asking them questions or thanking them for wishing them luck on the next run.With winning on an international field comes a little fame to it. How many followers did Sage receive after winning Olympic gold? From Feb. 5th (When preliminaries started) to Feb. 13th he had gotten 54,421 new followers (7,425-61,846)! The crazy thing is that he didn’t even receive the most followers of all Olympic athletes competing. Shaun White, one of the best snow boarders of all time received over 80,000 in the same span! He already had over a million followers to boot. And what’s crazier about all of this is that he didn’t even win his best event (half-pipe). He didn’t even medal! He got fourth and still gained all these followers.

From what I have noticed is that there might be a secret formula on how to gain followers. It is just about being yourself and if you become great at what you do, they will follow. Seriously, people like to follow winners. I do at least. These Olympics put these athletes on pinnacles because they are the best of the best and when they represent your country well and succeed everyone wants to be apart of that. Even if you have already made a name for yourself and don’t succeed every time people will still support that person.

My question for you guys is “Does success play the biggest role in obtaining twitter followers or is it more then that?”

 

 

Team USA wins against Russia: T.J. Oshie plays hero in shoot out

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SOCHI Russia – What started off as a celebration for an entire country ended in only silence except for those fans who are brave enough to wave the US flag in enemy territory. Russia had anticipated this game for months and the way it ended was not how they expected. A shootout loss. Watch the shootout here. T.J. Oshie was the big hero on the eighth round of the shootout, followed by Jonathan Quick’s stop of Ilya Kovalchuk, to launch the epic victory for the US. This was indeed an amazing event to be watching. With the Russians scoring first, it was 1-0 when Cam Fowler attempted a shot and managed to get the puck passed the Russian goaltender on a power play. The US team finally managed to take the lead with about 10 minutes remaining in the game. It was at this point that the US team was predicted to win. However, the Russians quickly responded this time firing a shot through Quick’s legs and tied the game. Then came the controversy. When Fyodor Tyutin scored breaking the tie, the play was challenged. The referees looked at the replay and disallowed the goal because the net fell off of the moorings. This stunned the crowd including the Russian President Vladimir Putin. The two teams ended up in overtime and after eight intense shootout rounds, it was Oshie who beat Bobrovski for the winning goal. The two teams respectfully shook hands on the ice and the game concluded.

Twitter fans from all over were buzzing about T.J. Oshie and his victory in the shootout. Posts range from funny meems to strong words of encouragemnent. There was even a new hashtag trending #YouJustGotOshied. @OSH74 has over 200,00 followers now. Check out some twitter responses here.

Heartwarming Commercials from P&G.

17,802,181 is the number of views of heartwarming P&G commercial “Pick Them Back Up” on YouTube. This commercial shows us how athletes are doing their best to get a chance to participate in the Sochi Winter Olympic Games and moms supporting their children in every way to achieve their dreams. P&G`s new commercial strategy started in 2012 with the London summer olympic games. “Best Job” is a Emmy Award winner commercial, which also shows how moms are helping their children to achieve something great, something big by pushing their back and picking them up again and again. It`s sentimental scenes and the message “for teaching us that falling only makes us stronger” would definitely make you cry. 

With #thankyoumom and @thankyoumom P&G tweets the results of the #sochi2014 USA team, advertises their products, and communicates with it`s customers. It will help P&G to attract more and more people on the social media.

It`s not only commercials that Procter & Gamble brands supporting moms. Procter & Gamble brands opened Global Family Home (#PGFamilyHome) to support moms and families of athletes who is participating at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games. Here is the time lapse video of #PGFamilyHome being built at Sochi. https://vine.co/v/M7hbaE7zX5A

In addition to the Family Home, P&G is giving $1,000 Visa gift cards to each of the 357 Olympic and Paralympic athletes’ moms, intended to help them travel to Sochi. Great company!

Catching peoples` hearts is the best marketing strategy!