Jun 07, 2010 at 02:57 PM
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Ads & Activation Recs for Post-Spill Sponsorship

In case you haven't heard, BP is powering the World Cup. Cue the late night comics. While the World Cup's timing could not have been worse, the world's largest sporting event will offer an unprecedented platform to communicate BP's message - whatever that may be. Here's what it was several months back when the oil giant dropped two World Cup spots.

Tac Anderson of New Comm Biz recently offered up some very smart activation recs to BP's marketing and PR minds:

  • Besides focusing every available resource on stopping and cleaning up the spill they need to have a strong plan in place just for World Cup.
  • BP Global should support BP Africa in terms of messaging around the spill and monitor accordingly but largely get out of BP South Africa’s way and let them engage with the local community.
  • BP Global should consider having people on the ground trying to answer questions openly and honestly but understand that this will only have minimal effect because people are rightly upset.
  • Any tickets BP gets as a sponsor of World Cup should be auctioned off to a charity that is currently cleaning up their mess. All of them!
  • I’d also consider giving all sponsorship opportunities, booths, ad space, etc to the Deepwater Horizon Response joint effort with Federal agencies, which BP is a member of and probably forced to fund.
  • I also think BP needs to more transparently disclose their affiliation to Deepwater Horizons Response on the Facebook page. (As an aside, whoever is running the Facebook page also needs to engage with people not just post news updates.)

    So what's next? BP is planning to release new TV spots as early as this week, in follow-up to their recently released CEO apology spot. Meanwhile, London 2012 execs are hoping that BP's $72 million commitment will help the company recover from the sticky situation they're currently in.

    "I suspect that they will actually find it is a very good decision because the publicity they will get out of sponsoring London's Olympics will be precisely the sort of thing they need in order to help them recover from their current difficulties," Britain's Olympics and Sports Minister Hugh Robertson told insidethegames.biz.

    Back stateside however, some are calling for the Olympic movement to reconsider BP's sponsorship in the face of the current circumstances.

    Agent Evan Morgenstein, who counts many famous Olympians as clients, recently spoke out on the issue.

    "If they're [the Olympic movement] not starting to get the feeling that the rings are covered in oil, then they should wait a while and do nothing," Morgenstein said. "Then, trust me, the rings will be soaked in oil."

    Meanwhile, according to ESPN, BP still plans to honor all its sports sponsorship agreements.

    "Our Olympics sponsorships were driven by our presence as major employer and investor in the two countries [U.S. and UK] and our ability to provide energy in various forms to the necessary logistics efforts during the Games," BP spokesman Robert Wine wrote in an e-mail.