With the summer Olympics kicking off next month, Comcast is ramping up promotional activity around everything from coverage on the various NBCUniversal properties to the unique experience cable customers will get via its X1 set-top boxes. U.S. TV rights have become more expensive with each successive Summer Olympics. That creates pressure for NBCU to deliver more revenue in order to see stable or, ideally, increasing profits from its investment.
The Olympic Games in Rio are 25 days away but NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke believes his company has already won the gold in ad sales. After a press preview on Monday of NBC’s Olympics coverage, Burke told the Los Angeles Times that the company has hit its sales target for the Rio Games, which he said will end up being be “the most profitable Olympics in history.”
Over the last several months, stations were reminded about the risks of publishing ads or engaging in promotional activities that use the terms Super Bowl or March Madness without first asking the NFL or the NCAA, respectively, for permission. With millions of viewers about to tune into the Olympic games in Rio this August, here’s a reminder that any Olympic trademarks, symbols or other branded content should not be used in advertising and marketing campaigns across any media platforms (on-air, websites, social media sites, in hashtags, apps, etc.) except by authorized advertisers.
The deafening noise over the Zika virus has drowned out the usual pre-Games chatter over qualifying, medal favorites and rising stars. And it’s hurting sponsors as well.
NBC will provide 85 hours of virtual reality programming for the Rio Summer Olympics, but it will only be available to users of Samsung Galaxy smartphones with its Gear VR headset. The video will include opening and closing ceremonies, men’s basketball, gymnastics and track-and-field events.
For 16 days, people who tune to NBC expecting to see a repeat of The Blacklist or a fresh episode of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon will be out of luck. Between Friday, Aug. 5, and Sunday, Aug. 21, the flagship broadcast network of NBCUniversal will show 260.5 hours of programming related to the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Savannah Guthrie of the Today show, who is 44, announced yesterday that she was pregnant with her second child and will not go to Rio de Janeiro this summer for Olympics coverage because of concern over the Zika virus. The network said she is one of a “small handful” of NBC employees who will forego the trip, but did not specify what it meant by a “small handful.” Guthrie is the first employee to drop out of the trip to identify herself publicly.
The network says it will provide 4K broadcasts of the opening and closing ceremonies in Brazil as well as such high-profile sports as basketball, track & field and swimming. However, the 4K coverage will not air until the day after the event occurs.
Snapchat has scored a partnership with NBC to show highlights from the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. NBC is reportedly hashing out similar deals with both Facebook and Twitter.
NBCU will share video of the Summer Games from Rio on social media for the first time in an effort to connect with those all-important millennials.
With a little more than 100 days to go before the start of the Rio Olympics, NBCUniversal is rolling out its largest marketing campaign ever for an event it hopes will set TV viewing records. The marketing push, which NBCU executives value at $100 million, 33% more than four years ago, will span TV ads, social media and online video.
Host nation Brazil is suffering through a crippling recession, and some venues aren’t up to international standards. Plus there’s the Zika virus. Still, NBCUniversal ad sales remain brisk.
NBC on Tuesday announced that it is on track to shatter the all-time Olympic ad sales record, as dollar volume for the Summer Games in Rio is pacing well ahead of those for the 2012 London Games. With four months to go before the torch is lit at Maracanã Stadium, NBC said it has passed the $1 billion mark in national ad sales, a tally that includes broadcast, cable and digital inventory.
NBC has local ad packages across broadcast, cable and digital. Right now it’s negotiating. The network wants much higher pricing than 2012, but buyers say that won’t hold.
Non-Olympic sponsors may for the first time feature Olympic athletes in their ads, but there’s a catch. Those campaigns need to be ready now, geared to build buzz for the games this summer.
Seven months before the opening ceremony, NBC Sports’ ad sales chief Seth Winter said the network is ahead of where it was at this time four years ago before the London games. But it wasn’t always looking that way. Pointing to the proliferation of tablet and mobile usage over the past four years, Winter is predicting a 50% increase in digital ad sales over London. Though, in an effort to protect the TV broadcast, NBC is requiring a certain level of ad spend on linear for those that want to buy digital spots.
With the 2016 Summer Games taking place in Rio de Janeiro, which is just an hour ahead of the United States’ Eastern time zone, the network can broadcast many high-profile events live in prime time. Make no mistake, NBC executives are thrilled about that prospect, but it means tweaking a formula that has worked so well in recent Olympics.
For advertisers, the Olympics and the Super Bowl have a lot in common: They both cost a fortune, demand commercials that make a splash and bring in some of TV’s biggest audiences. But Madison Avenue seems to have a more favorable view of the global Games than it does the Big Game. With a year to go before the opening ceremonies for the 2016 Summer Olympics, NBCUniversal believes it will sell well over $1 billion in advertising for its telecast, slated to take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Tomorrow, which marks one year until the first Olympic events, NBC’s Natalie Morales will report live from Rio for the Today show while Miguel Almaguer will report live for Nightly News. On Rockefeller Plaza, several Olympians will appear on Today demonstrating their sports. Then at 8 p.m. ET, NBCUniversal will “road block” a 60-second promo for the games across all of its 18 broadcast and cable networks, including NBC, Telemundo, NBCSN, CNBC, MSNBC and USA.