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A New Marketing Lesson From the 2012 London Olympics

by Liz Elting  |  
November 16, 2012
  |  27,031 views

The athletes competing at the London Olympics broke many records, but the number coming out of the Games that is most revealing for us is the worldwide audience: not the number of TV viewers worldwide, but the overwhelming number of global online spectators.

The BBC reported that more than 55 million viewers went to the Web to catch up on the competition, see video footage, and communicate about the Games with other viewers in real time. In fact, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) called it the first social media Olympics.

To make the most of this massive audience that was hungry for all things Olympic, smart content providers prepared months, even years, in advance by creating engaging and culturally appropriate brand messaging for consumers in diverse languages across the globe.

A Social Media Success Story

Santa Monica-based digital advertising agency The ZiZo Group created the largest social media video campaign in the history of the Olympics.


The agency worked with a leading Olympic sponsor to develop a collection of 21 inspiring profiles of the mothers of Olympic athletes from around the world. Each mom shared her own insights about her child's dedication and the support he or she received along the long road to London. The videos have been translated into 11 languages, and they have beenseen by viewers around the globe.

ZiZo Group's area of expertise is developing and using online video as a social media marketing platform. For language translation and localization expertise, the agency turned to an experienced language service provider. Translation and localization experts collaborated with the agency from the planning stage through completion of the project, driving the following:

  • Translation of the interview questions for the Olympians and their mothers in eight languages
  • Language interpretation services during the live, on-location interviews around the world
  • Translation and drafting of complete video scripts for multilingual videos
  • Translation and localization of the post-production video subtitling, enabling international viewers to view and understand the videos

Download This: Creating Content for a Global Audience


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Liz Elting is a co-founder and the CEO of TransPerfect/Translations, a family of companies providing global business services in over 100 languages.

LinkedIn: Liz Elting

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  • by Laura Sun Nov 25, 2012 via iphone

    I impressed. This strategy was genius and so up to date with the world and emerging technology

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