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Companies target Paralympic ad spots

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Capitalising on London 2012

Channel 4’s Paralympic coverage is attracting interest from a host of big name brands, as they look to take advantage of potentially big audiences.

Interested parties include Tesco, Apple, Google, Kelloggs, Mars, Go Compare and Volvo, which are among around 50 companies looking to snap up advert spots during coverage of the events.

After Google declared the Olympics to be ‘the most wired Games ever’ following huge search and social media engagement, it was always likely that the Paralympics would become a target for advertising campaigns.

Of course, London 2012 has strict rules surrounding advertising, with Games chief Lord Coe often stating the need to ensure official partners get a fair deal.

These include McDonalds, Coca Cola, British Airways, BT and Lloyds TSB. Any company that does not figure on this list may not use the Games to promote their products in any way.

This is partially enforced by a ‘blackout period’ running from August 21 to September 13, in which non-sponsors cannot feature Paralympic athletes in their advertising. However, they are permitted to use Olympic athletes.

Some brands not so sure

While a large number of brands seemingly cannot wait to capitalise on the Olympic legacy, others are more cautious as they wait to see whether the Paralympics will hit the same heights.

Opinion is divided as to whether the Paralympics will attract enough viewers to make a big-money campaign worthwhile, and many companies seem prepared to wait until they know for sure before committing to anything.

Channel 4’s programming will be fronted by newsreaders Jon Snow and Kelly Cates, Olympic broadcaster Clare Balding, comedian Adam Hills and athletes Jonathan Edwards and Ade Adepitan.

Natalie Booth, online marketing manager at theEword, said: “It’s not surprising that so many brands want to muscle in on the Paralympic action, but with limited spaces available it will be interesting to see who comes out on top in the battle to secure the peak timeslots.”

Written by James Riches

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