China Ad Expert Advises on Olympic Games Victory

13 September 2005

The Olympian ideal of a community of nations coming together to celebrate sporting prowess could be lost on Chinese consumers at Beijing 2008.

Asia advertising guru Tom Doctoroff, ceo for Greater China at JWT, says it's victory that counts with the hosts of the next Games, so messages from sponsors including Coca-Cola and McDonald's will need to capture that mindset if they are to be effective.

Doctoroff warns that "soft and fuzzy" will not work. He advises: "Chinese revere and fear winners. You should directly link the product with the conquering spirit of the victors. Don't get caught up with what Chinese don't care about . . . What they really want is how can your product help them to move forward."

The multinational companies partnering the Games have paid the International Olympic Committee $883 million (€710m; £480m) for the privilege, and want to see a return on their investment.

Doctoroff urges them to take advantage of the fact the Games are important to the self-esteem of the nation.

He says: "Chinese are nervous about 2008, they are nervous about if it's going to come off. A lot of foreign brands can increase their relevancy by saying how they are going to help the games come off well."

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff