Guess Why No One Is Watching The 2016 Olympics.

images-1In the past few weeks, I’ve personally and professionally witnessed several instances of businesses canceling 2016 Olympic marketing expenditures specifically because the rules of the International Olympic Committee basically bar anyone from associating with the coveted name and image of the games. In other words, everyone is so afraid of being sued by the IOC, they are just ignoring the 2016 games.

Hey, IOC, welcome to the 21st century.

Transparency and organic sharing are the heart of communications today, but you’ve scared the marketplace so badly, no one wants to associate with you at all. So no one is helping you to promote the games with social posts or ads or publicity. So no one is watching – most especially a younger generation of consumers who frankly don’t watch that much television to begin with. And who spend an inordinate amount of time on their mobile devices and social sites.

If you really want to help yourself, wake up to the new reality of how the marketplace listens, learns and communicates. And put your old ways into a new perspective. Not only should you allow people and businesses to use your likeness, you should encourage them to use it. You should applaud them every time they display the Olympic rings.

Or you can continue to suffer from embarrassingly low TV ratings, and lose advertisers going forward. It’s your call. But as a judge, I’m giving you a score of only 3.5.


Jim Sweeney


Jim is a veteran of the agency industry and the founder of Sweeney. He is uncommonly passionate about the idea of creating and implementing insanely great marketing campaigns that achieve insanely great results. He pioneered the full-service, full-circle agency model and continues to forge new ideas in an ever-changing industry. And he is accessible to everyone about anything, seemingly all the time, serving as a mentor to all agency personnel and clients.