Skier jumping


The Olympic Games are officially underway and competition is heating up – but not just among athletes. As we’ve seen in years past, competition among marketers is often times just as intense as the actual sporting events themselves.

In addition to the Olympics Games being the biggest international sports competition in the world, they are also the biggest international marketing event, generating millions in advertising revenue from some of the world’s biggest brands. However, brands are prevented from any form of Olympic brand advertising unless they are official sponsors – and unless you have $100 million to spare, chances are you won’t be sponsoring this year’s Olympic Games.

So what do you do instead? One way marketers for marketers to capitalize on the Olympic Games is through working with influencers to create content around the event, in the moment.

1. Identify Trending Hashtags

Although brands are prohibited from directly mentioning the Olympic Games in their posts, no rules prohibit the mention of popular hashtags. Once you’ve found the right influencers for your target audience(s), work with these influencers to not only create branded content relevant to each of your audiences and hashtags, but provide you with key insights from a research perspective around the other conversations they’re starting and participating. Brands should work to involve influencers into the research process and work with them to provide key insights on popular hashtags among their followers. Once the these audience-specific hashtags are identified, work together to create relevant content to supplement the hashtag. This presents a major opportunity for the idea of influence to go beyond just content creation but transgress into insights as well.

2. Have Fun With Instagram Live

When it comes to your Olympic marketing plan, live video should be top of mind. Since the release of Instagram Live, video views on the platform have increased 80 percent and users are creating four times as many videos as last year. With Instagram Live, brands should work with influencers to create engaging video content in real-time. However, when it comes to creating compelling content in real-time, things can get complicated fast. The ability to go live with anyone is high risk, high reward. In order for brands to have success with Instagram Live’s With Friends feature, proper planning is necessary. Work with influencers to co-host Olympic watch parties, share dual perspectives from certain sporting events, or host Q&As. Then save the broadcast to Instagram Stories for amplified reach and engagement.

3. Say Hello To Snapchat

Despite months of declining stock, Snapchat has reported that both its user growth and revenue growth are accelerating. The app now has 187 million daily active users, up from 178 million in the last quarter and up 18 percent year-over-year. With Snapchat teaming up with NBC to stream live moments and daily highlights from the Olympics, it’s likely that the number of daily active users on the platform will be even higher. In fact, Snapchat is twice as popular as Instagram when it comes to teen’s favorite social apps. With Snapchat losing steam amongst mega- and macro-influencer communities, brands should look to Snap-happy teen micro-influencers in their customer base to co-develop and co-create relevant content.

For more on how to take your influencer marketing to Olympic gold heights, check out the latest playbook in our 2018 series: Accelerating Trust & Transparency in the Customer Journey Through Influencer-Generated Content.