From being seen as almost unable to do anything wrong, IBM Corp today is seen as capable of getting hardly anything right, and the company is looking to the Winter Olympics to burnish its battered and tarnished image, the Wall Street Journal reported. As a major sponsor it has produced four corporate ads for the […]
From being seen as almost unable to do anything wrong, IBM Corp today is seen as capable of getting hardly anything right, and the company is looking to the Winter Olympics to burnish its battered and tarnished image, the Wall Street Journal reported. As a major sponsor it has produced four corporate ads for the US market, each stressing how IBM is integral to the operation of the Olympics. Although IBM won’t say specifically how much it is spending on the campaign blitz, the company acknowledges that is in the same ballpark as Coca-Cola Co, which has booked about 150 spots during the Games. (CBS sold each 30-second spot for $250,000 to $350,000). For the Olympic ads, IBM will change its slogan to Gold, Silver, Bronze. And Blue. We’re different than any other sponsor, said Jed Bernstein, executive vice-president and account group head at Wells Rich: Unlike an official soft drink or official candy bar, IBM was selected to help make the Olympics run. That is reflected in the two 60-second spots, both of which are narrated by actor Roy Scheider. In one, black and white footage is used to recall 1952, the last time the Winter Games were held in Norway, when scores and statistics weren’t kept on analogue or digital equipment, the viewer is told. Instead, they were monitored and recorded by Ulf. Ulf Sorum, Scheider says, used to painstakingly write down the minutes and seconds of each athlete’s events and place them in the window of a local shop. The scene changes to colour and the viewer learns Sorum is now IBM operations manager handling the same thousands of results in less than a second because of IBM equipment. All the while, Sorum is cheering as statisticians work at IBM computers. Another spot boasts that far ahead of the athletes descending on the Olympic Village, IBM employees plan and design every event… To actually help and manage the Winter Games is the equivalent of two Super Bowls a day for 16 days.