The COC shows anyone can embody Olympic values

A campaign ahead of the Beijing games highlights the sacrifices made by a diverse range of athletes during an exceptionally challenging time.

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The Canadian Olympic Committee’s rallying cry for the upcoming Beijing Games is all about reinforcing Olympic values of achieving one’s dreams, whoever you are.

The spot, featuring high-contrast, cinematic training montages, is part of the new “Glory From Anywhere” campaign. The creative highlights the sacrifices athletes make to overcome obstacles, which inspires all Canadians, according to Jacquie Ryan, chief brand and commercial officer at the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC).

“It’s really about the values it takes to achieve that moment of glory that can define an athlete’s career,” Ryan adds.

The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics begin in February, less than six months after the end of the Tokyo Summer Olympics, thanks to the latter being postponed by a year due to the pandemic. One of the opportunities around the Tokyo and Beijing Games being held so close together, Ryan says, is the organization can build on the momentum.

The spot ends with the “Be Olympic” tagline, which – as Ryan sees it – means leaning into distinctly Canadian values like respect, bravery, determination and, of course, diversity, which factors significantly in this year’s campaign.

Cynthia Appiah is one of the athletes featured in “Glory from Anywhere.” Appiah participates in women’s monobob – a one-person bobsled event being introduced at Beijing 2022 – and she is seeking to encourage aspiring Black youth to pursue their athletic dreams. As she said to CBC recently, “The campaign literally means glory from anywhere, it doesn’t matter what part of Canada that you’re from, your socioeconomic status, your race.”

According to a recent report by Vividata, 23 million Canadian adults plan to follow the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics this February, nearly 58% of the total population, a big opportunity for engagement.

And according to Ryan, the COC also expects 87% of Canadians to engage with the Games at some point, with a younger set bringing in additional engagement through digital channels.

The latest campaign is by Camp Jefferson, which won COC’s business in 2019.  K-72 led the French creative campaign.

On the buy side, the not-for-profit relies on in-kind media and, according to Ryan, has tremendous support from Bell Media, Cadillac Fairview, The Globe & Mail and CBC. It also works with media agency OMD to help try and engage with other networks and outlets to carry the campaign too.

The Canadian Olympic Committee is also deploying across Corus and Rogers properties, APTN and digitally through DAZN and Samsung TV.

The budget for “Glory from Anywhere” is in line with previous efforts, and runs until Feb. 20 across TV, online video, print, social and digital, along with digital out-of-home boards at Yonge Dundas Square.