SBD/June 14, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Powerade Launches First Worldwide Olympics Campaign; Touts Official Sports Drink Status

Powerade is “embracing nameonics with an effort that will be introduced as part of the brand’s first worldwide Olympic campaign,” according to Stuart Elliott of the N.Y. TIMES. The new “Power through” campaign, with ads to appear “in more than 35 markets,” will include “commercials on television and online, some of which run as long as 90 seconds; print, digital and outdoor ads; signs in stores; an app; and a presence at the Summer Games in London.” The campaign, by Wieden & Kennedy, Amsterdam, features Olympic athletes from four countries: Australia, Britain, Canada and the U.S. The athletes' presence in the campaign “reflects the brand’s status as the official sports drink of the 2012 Olympic Games in London, just as its sibling, Coca-Cola, is the official soft drink.” The campaign “evokes familiar phrases like 'Power up' and 'Shining on.'" Powerade Global Group Creative Dir Brynn Bardacke said Powerade in the campaign “becomes a metaphor for a coach.” She added that the drink is similar to a coach by “talking athletes through that inevitable moment when they don’t want to go on.” An ad featuring Canadian swimmer Brent Hayden carries the headline, “Years of work make the second that count.” An ad with U.S. men’s soccer F Juan Agudelo carries the headline, “First to believe is first to the ball.” Bardacke said that Powerade's sales “have been strong … especially after the brand benefited from a global campaign that was tied to its sponsorship” of the ‘10 World Cup in South Africa (NYTIMES.com, 6/13).
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