Pace on Brands and the Tokyo Olympics

AdAgeAn AdAge article about the controversial 2021 Olympics is being reprinted by publications around the world and fomenting lots of discussion among marketers. In 5 Things Brands Should Know to Prepare for the Olympics, Ilyse Liffreing reports that despite the uncertainty, 15 global corporations have paid a record $3.3 billion to participate—at least twice as much as previous games.

MASB President/CEO Tony Pace advises brands to be wary about appearing too celebratory since many parts of the world are still suffering from the pandemic. “Brands should recognize how consumers are feeling at this very moment and project the mood of the country during the games.” He suggests messaging should take a middle ground with a “happy, but slightly subdued” approach.

In March, Pace talked with Paul Wilson of NBCUniversal and Paul Bamundo of Laurel Road about the challenges faced by the 2021 Olympics and Paralympics: