Some brands have benefited from sponsoring the Summer Olympic Games in London, according to survey results released September 2012 by Research Now. Those benefits not only manifest themselves in increased purchase likelihood among consumers, but also in a greater understanding of why the brands would sponsor the Olympics in the first place.
In a survey before the Games (released in July), Research Now reported that McDonald’s and Coca-Cola were perceived as the least appropriate sponsors, owing to growing concerns over obesity and health problems. Many UK and American respondents indicated they saw no correlation between McDonald’s and the Olympics (46% in UK, 21% in US), or between Coca-Cola and the Games (28% UK, 11% US).
Feelings thawed toward McDonald’s, though. Whereas 24% of the respondents overall had questioned its sponsorship before the Games, that dropped to 17% after the Games. Even Dow and Atos (a global IT services provider) won over some percentage of viewers pre-and post-Games, with 31% questioning the sponsorship of each pre-Games, dropping to 25% for Atos and 26% for Dow after.
Coca-Cola’s improvement was less notable. 17% said before the Games that they did not understand why Coca-Cola was a sponsor, and 14% said the same after the event.
Sponsorship a Purchase Influence for Some
Among the post-Games survey respondents, all of whom watched some of the Olympic Games, 24% report that they are more inclined to buy from Adidas, and 17% each more likely to buy from McDonald’s and Samsung because those brands sponsored the Games. Fully 29% of American respondents are more inclined to buy from Coca-Cola, versus just 12% of British respondents.
Games Influenced Recommendations
The Games also affected the likelihood of viewers recommending some brands to family or friends. After the Games, McDonald’s saw a 4% lift in the number of respondents who would recommend it; conversely, Coca-Cola saw a 7% drop. Both brands had suffered some negative sentiment around the Games as being unhealthy food choices, thus poorly suited to athletic sponsorships.
Still, the end result is that 18% of respondents report being likely to recommend McDonalds to family and friends, while 22% would recommend Coca-Cola products. 20% would recommend Adidas, and 18% would recommend Samsung.
About The Data: Research Now surveyed 7,200 people aged 16 and over who acknowledged that they watched some of the Olympic Games this year. The survey was conducted online via Research Now’s Valued Opinions Panel and social media sample. 1,200 interviews were conducted in each of the following six markets: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. Quotas were set to population statistics across all six markets. Incidence was roughly 78%, with slight fluctuations among France and Germany.