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Thread: Skaters' commercial endorsements for the Sochi Olympics

  1. #46
    Custom Title skateluvr's Avatar
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    60 year old women are too smart to drink coke. I hate that corp. as well. but would rather see the money go to the younguins needing it to train. I doubt mk ever drank much coke. it is addictive due to about 16 tsps. of white sugar per can/bottle. pure poison. I have always thought coke and macdonalds should pay sin taxes for their products. I have met many people who drank a coke for breakfast to wake up. also, since SB brought up Dasani water, I read once that Coke actually bought water from the Ganges and purified it for ? products. This was several years ago-I don't recall the source just the shock/disgust if true.

    Anyone know if this was true or urban myth?

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  3. #48
    Custom Title heyang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TontoK View Post
    Coming from someone who has a past in the corporate world...

    Coca-Cola doesn't give a damn who "needs" an endorsement deal or who "deserves" an endorsement deal. They don't care who is a legend or who is an emerging talent.

    They made the deal with who they believe will sell the most Coke. I guarantee you that this wasn't a random or haphazard choice. They conducted market research to find out.
    I agree 100%.

    Also, don't forget that Evan has DWTS on his resume too, which makes him much more recognizable than any other recent male skater. You can pretty much bet that a majority of the US population would not be able to recognize and/or name any of the US Men's top 3. If you ask for names of US male skaters, many would likely think Hamilton or Boitano before anyone else - that's going back a long time. If a current hopeful (who wanted the contract) was realistically a lock for any color medal, then Coca-Cola would probably have considered him/her.


    As others have implied, it's also possible that the other skaters feel that they can't handle promotional commitments (especially if they already have another major sponsor) or that they just don't like the products produced by the sponsor.

  4. #49
    Like subtlety in ice dancing Serious Business's Avatar
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    Yeah, corporations never go wrong. Has anybody seen the world economy lately?

    And for god's sakes, stop citing Dancing with the Stars as proof of Evan Lysacek's star power. He couldn't even beat that Pussycat Doll chick on the show. And guess what wondrous things she would go on to do? Have her solo music career bomb in the US. Get hired to judge the first season of X-Factor in the US, which did so badly in the ratings she was fired. The notoriety from Dancing with the Stars don't mean much, not even for the winner, never mind a loser like Lysacek.

  5. #50
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    Even though we should be happy that Coke is actually sponsoring someone, don't most of us here feel kind of ripped off? Both of these skaters, yes even Lysacek, are irrelevant to competitive skating today.

    Yes, Coke makes its decisions best based on what it thinks will sell its sugar-carbonated bad-for-your teeth and probably not so good for your body beverage. But what the sport most needs is that its present skaters be supported and promoted by sponsors. Coke is not going to go that route. It is making its message very clear.

    One can draw whatever inferences about what type of corporate citizen Coke is by going with these two skaters, one of whom obviously does not need the money and both of whom are irrelevant to the sport today. Let's give Coke its due then. If Coke wants to come across to those who presently follow skating: as a corporation that is rich and irrelevant to the present sport and those who skate competitively in it today, that is how it should be appreciated.

    There are present day competitive skaters that it could and SHOULD have used.

    Shame on Coke.

  6. #51
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    Putting aside more idealistic concerns such as merit, I still find it short-sighted on Coke's part to choose Evan. To be quite honest, he isn't all that well-known here in the U.S. -- or perhaps well-remembered is the better term; even if his DWTS outing might have garnered an initial flare of interest, I get the feeling that any possible attention due to it has since run its course (even my friends who do ballroom dance and like to watch DWTS as a guilty pleasure -- but do not follow figure skating -- seemed to have been indifferent towards him). So in terms of household recognition, I feel that he's really in no better or worse position than any of the other U.S. men.

    However, there is a high chance that Evan might not make the U.S. Olympic team, in which case whatever marginal amount of celebrity Evan can claim relative to the other men becomes moot. As others have alluded to, realistically, Meryl and Charlie are guaranteed to get longer and more meaningful screen-time during the Olympics by virtue of the fact that they actually have a good shot of winning and are practically guaranteed to get a medal, unlike Evan or any of the other U.S. men. In the case that Meryl and Charlie's previous endorsement contracts preclude them from signing with Coke, I still think it would have been smarter in the long run to have chosen one of the younger, up-and-coming skaters such as Max Aaron. Even if the U.S. men's field doesn't have many sure bets this coming year, it's unlikely that Evan's competitive career will go much further whereas the younger skaters will still be around for the next Olympic cycle (besides, I get the feeling that Max is probably going to be on the team for 2014 anyway, particularly in this quad-emphasized era). Just for an example, if Coke played up Max Aaron's Nationals-winning Tron/Daft Punk program (which apparently already has a small tumblr fandom and tumblr already skews young demographically, something of interest to all corporations), I feel like Max would be just as marketable as Evan, if not more so.

    (As an aside, I feel like I'm always compelled to stop lurking on the oddest subjects... Oh well.)

  7. #52
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Welcome, w_darling! You will find plenty of odd threads to post on here.

    (signed, p_pan )

    Quote Originally Posted by Serious Business
    The US ice dancing team that really needs a sponsorship is the woman in my avatar, Madison Chock and her partner Evan Bates. Given how predictable ice dancing results are, and the fact that US has 3 spots in the discipline, Chock/Bates, as the #2 team in the US, is guaranteed a ticket to Sochi. She is also guaranteed to be one of the sexiest, most glamorous and most beautiful female athletes to compete there. I hear that's good for advertising. She also has the most outrageous and hilarious expressions (as you can see from my avatar).
    http://cdn02.cdn.gofugyourself.com/w...3-820x1228.jpg

    Were they crazy, or crazy like a fox? Coca Cola changes their recipe to make it more like Pepsi. Pepsi Cola declares victory. The President of Pepsico writes a gloating book about it.

    The public is outraged. We demand our old Coke back!!!! We write tens of thousands of letters expressing our outrage at being deprived of our Coca Cola. "Oh, all right, if we just have to." Coke soars to a higher market share than before the adventure began.

    As for what the Coca Cola company should do, I do not have an opinion (except the standard one of course -- take all your money and give it to Michelle, so that she can turn it into good works for the benefit of humankind). But I do know that the Olympic Games cannot run without corporate donations and sponsorships, nor could the USOC field a team. Coca Cola has been a generous (if not entirely altruistic) sponsor of the Olympic Games since 1928. Coca Cola is also and active sponsor of the Special Olympics and the Paralympic Games.

    http://www.adbranch.com/wp-content/u...mpyc_games.jpg
    Last edited by Mathman; 06-13-2013 at 10:13 PM.

  8. #53
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    Good point, Math. We're thinking only of individual brand spokespeople, but the major corporations do a lot of donation to the actual entities involved in sports events, the way I think AT & T did for the 2010 Olympics. (When they used Gretchen Bleiler in that transcendent snowboard ad.)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XdmWa0aGu8

  9. #54
    Outdated Old Dinosaur
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    Our world is a pretty small one... Coke's concern would be marketing to a global marketplace.

    Coca Cola also has a charitable foundation. According to their website (and spare me the blah-blah about how they can lie about the numbers) Coke contributed over $122M last year, including to many causes promoting balanced diets and a healthy lifestyle. This isn't bad for a company whose primary objective is to earn a profit for it's stockholders.

    As for the comments regarding how Coke is awful for your body... I don't drink Coke; I gave up all soft drinks in the past year. But I used to. And I enjoyed it. It was good.

    Moderation in all things. A Coke isn't the worst thing in the world. Too much isn't good. But neither is too much alcohol. Or coffee. Or chocolate. Or...

    I don't like preachy people. When I smoked, nothing set me off more than some obese person looking down their nose and chiding me about ruining my health.

  10. #55
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Icey View Post
    I would have thought MIchelle's current position would have precluded her doing something like this.
    That's a good point. She will probably be part of some sort of official U.S. State Department delegation to the Games. I doubt if we will see any ads with Michelle saying, "Yum, yum, how refreshing! I like Coca Cola and you should drink it, too."

    More likely something like, "As a member of the international board of directors for the Special Olympics I would like to thank Coca Cola for their continuing commitment as a sponsoring partner for the Special Olympics program since its founding in 1962. Because of the vision and generosity of sponsoring corporations like Coca Cola this program now serves four million intellectually challenged young athletes from 170 countries and organizes more than 53,000 local competitive events each year. (Cue "Together we can.")

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLOH-lIo_os#t=4m4s

    "This is Michelle Kwan. Thanks, Coke!"

    http://en.rian.ru/images/18164/89/181648907.jpg
    Last edited by Mathman; 06-14-2013 at 01:34 PM.

  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    That's a good point. She will probably be part of some sort of official U.S. State Department delegation to the Games. I doubt if we will see any ads with Michelle saying, "Yum, yum, how refreshing! I like Coca Cola and you should drink it, too."

    More likely something like, "As a member of the international board of directors for the Special Olympics I would like to thank Coca Cola for their continuing commitment as a sponsoring partner for the Special Olympics program since its founding in 1962. Because of the vision and generosity of sponsoring corporations like Coca Cola this program now serves four million intellectually challenged young athletes from 170 countries and organizes more than 53,000 local competitive events each year. (Cue "Together we can.")

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLOH-lIo_os#t=4m4s

    "This is Michelle Kwan. Thanks, Coke!"
    You're right! I never thought of it that way, but that's exactly the approach she needs to take, because anything else would be crass. Fortunately, I imagine that this isn't going to be a decision she'll have to make on her own; people from the various committees and entities she's a part of, not to mention her politically savvy in-laws, will make sure she doesn't go off in the wrong direction.

    Years ago, when Spielberg first arranged to have Schindler's List shown on network TV, there was a lot of discussion about how any sponsor could possibly show some upbeat ad anywhere during the telecast. Yet of course a sponsor wouldn't want to be anonymous! The decision was finally made to have fewer station breaks, and during each break, only a decorous symbol with the name of the sole sponsor (who I believe was the Ford Motor Company--take a bow, Detroit) and no promotion of any product. It worked very well, and it gave many people the chance to watch the movie. In fact, this was my first viewing of the film, because I hadn't had the courage to see it in the theater. For me it was a moving, respectful viewing experience where the film could speak for itself.

    Though many of us have our reservations about Coca Cola products being nothing but pure sugar, and the company being an example of corporate overreaching, actually Coca Cola is one of the better choices for a major Olympic sponsor, because it's an old-time blue-chip brand, and it can carry off some sort of dignified ad campaign where just the mention of its name could be enough to promote itself.

  12. #57
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    first of all michelle is a legen,
    winning a gold medal isnt a guarantee.

    what some people dont realize is due to her governmental work that helps keep her in the eye.

    also Coca Cola isn't against her President Fitness Council since Coca Cola also has Dasani Water (minute maid orange juice) which is nutritous,
    not to mention the diet, sugar free, coke products.

    michelle has does tremendous things both on/off the ice in her accomplishements and what she has done.

    dorothy, kristi might be busy with other things and personally i think they have enough with dorothy jewelry line, kristi wanting her children book. yoga type line getting going or something like that. they might be busy.
    michelle is seen in government which also equals limelight in own way among other things.
    michelle is well known with special olympics.
    the other u.s. skaters hasn't really done enough to warrant it except for davis/white.

  13. #58
    Rejoicing in the land of Kwan kwanatic's Avatar
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    Just to repeat a very eye-opening response Mathman post on FSU, it's not Coca-Cola's job to promote the popularity of figure skating.

    People are saying Coke should be trying to promote new stars but the truth of the matter is that's not their goal. They are using Michelle and Evan, two publicly known champions, to promote their product. Why sit around calculating odds of who may or may not make the US team (no one, especially in singles, is a 100% lock at this point) when you have the reigning Olympic gold medalist and a figure skating legend? Why take a chance on new stars (most of whom no one outside of our tiny figure skating universe has even heard of before) when you've got two tried and true marketable stars?

    As I said on FSU, if the endorsement had been between Coke and the USFSA, I could see people questioning the decision to use Michelle and Evan simply b/c that would mean the USFSA chose to promote past stars rather than future stars...but Coke came to Michelle and Evan...not the USFSA.

  14. #59
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Another interesting point came up on the FSU thread. Michelle and Evan both have the same agent, Shep Goldberg. Maybe Goldberg finagled some kind of a package deal for them.

  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Another interesting point came up on the FSU thread. Michelle and Evan both have the same agent, Shep Goldberg. Maybe Goldberg finagled some kind of a package deal for them.
    Evan got the Coke endorsement for the 2010 Olympics without Shep's help. ;-) At that time, Evan was the reigning World Champion. Now, Evan is the reigning Olympic Champion. I am sure Coke had a positive experience working with Evan in the past, or else they would not have decided to partner with him for the 2014 Olympics.

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