Every two years we go through the same ritual. Jingoistic flag waving, the non-stop talking head of Bob Costas, and a hyped-up athlete (Lindsey Vonn is this year’s model). Add a bunch of schmaltzy, sappy, million-dollar commercials.
Welcome to the Olympics folks, originally intended to celebrate pure (amateur) athleticism, and now unabashedly worshiping pure consumerism. The Olympics games party like it’s 1998. The commercials are out of step with the somber mood of the age, depicting faked optimism. The feel-good machine of Madison Avenue did not take a break even on the day that the Georgian luge racer died.
Perhaps that is why the commercial from Deloitte stands out among the cacophony of hyperbole for its sobriety and clarity. The commercial is straightforward and engaging: using imaginative line drawing to represent Olympics sports, it depicts the pure thrill of competing in the games. Delivering its message through titles only, it avoids embellishment with its almost haiku-like script: “combine perfect movement through time and space, with the heart and drive of a champion, and you are golden”. Simple, clever, to the point:
The spot does not try to draw a direct comparison between Deloitte and the athletes. The connection is implied, cleverly, by using the Deloitte “green dot” from its logo as the “athletes” in the spot. Brilliant. And of course the spot is made more effective because it is relevant to the games. Mark this commercial on the credit side of the ledger.
Avi Dan is President & CEO of Avidan Strategies, a New York based consultancy specialized in advising professional service companies on marketing and business development. Mr. Dan was previously a board member with two leading advertising agencies and managed another.