Public Relations

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.

#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

Sochi Winter Olympics @OHT

 

@OHT is the twitter Handle for One Hour Translation, a professional translation service backed by 15,000 professional HUMAN translators! @OHT offered services for free surrounding the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

The service proved to be a success. It was promoted by Mashable, SD Times, Fast Company and more. The Israeli app proved to be popular, ranking number one by the British Telegraph.

So what made @OHT so trendy during the winter Olympics? One Hour Translation offered free services to twitter users who were seeking to understand any phrase, sign, tweet, etc. that was in another language and it was simple to do and responses were fast. One Hour Translation released a statement that the services would be available for free during the winter Olympics. From athletes, reporters and visitors in Sochi, to fans at home anyone could tweet a phrase to @OHT followed by the language they would like it to be translated in to and receive a rapid response.
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With the service open to everyone from start to finish of the Winter Olympics, Ofer Shoshan, CEO of One Hour Translation was seeking none other than success in marketing of his brand, and why should he?

With the Olympics being an international sporting event and a global economy severely lacking in communication skills and language translation @OHT was sure to make a social media statement by offering free services.

Over all I have to say that the One Hour Translation marketing platform during the Winter Olympics was a great idea for PR, and from what I can tell proved to be successful, at least by the British Telegraph.

Did you know about the convenient handle on twitter, @OHT?

Did you use the service or did you find another service to be more useful?

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!

Winter Olympics Sochi 2014 Logo

Welcome to “The Social Games from #SRUSM”

I want to welcome you to The Social Games from #SRUSM! This blog is made up of student contributors from my Social Media course at Slippery Rock University (SRU). The hashtag (#srusm) is used in my course to share and discuss topics surrounding social media. Throughout the Olympics, they will be analyzing and posting commentary surrounding the use of social media during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

In combination with mainstream media, social media has become a powerful communication tool in society. The role of my Social Media course at SRU is to introduce students to how to leverage social media tools in the communication industry (i.e., marketing, PR, etc.). This blog will make the connection between the concepts taught in my course and the use of social media during the Olympics.

What Can You Expect to Read Here?
According to an article in Fast Company, the 2012 London Summer Olympics was amplified by the use of social media through the sharing of conversation and media. How will Sochi fair with social media? We have already seen the impact social media is having as the Olympics approach with reports of potential social media bans for journalists by the IOC and countries placing partial social media bans on their athletes to avoid distraction, as well as hate tweets forcing U.S. Olympian Ashley Wagner to quit Twitter.

My students will be analyzing and posting their commentary on the role of social media during the Olympics. I expect a wide-variety of topics to be discussed on this blog, including social media use by athletes/participants to how brands integrate social media and the Olympics into their marketing efforts. They will also be responsible for reading the IOC Social Media Blogging and Internet Guidelines to be well informed on Olympic policies.

As you follow the commentary on this blog, I hope you find it informative and encourage you to join in on the conversation by posting comments!