The Olympic and Paralympic Games can be one of the most effective international marketing platforms on the planet as it allows brand partners and sponsors to reach billions of people across the world. However, staging the Games and managing the operations of every organisation within the Olympic and Paralympic Movement requires a tremendous amount of policy, procedure and training oversight as well as brand control.

In the area of branding alone, sponsors of all types create new content, new marketing materials and new merchandise to promote involvement, which must adhere to the strict rules and guidelines on how this must be executed.

How do global sponsors efficiently ensure their new multi-channel content remains brand compliant accurate, relevant and can also get to market quickly?

The only feasible answer is to automate the process. In a nutshell, content automation automates the assembly, management, publishing, and delivery of reusable content components for multiple media and audiences, eliminating as many manual processes as possible along the way to increase productivity, reduce costs, and increase the effectiveness of content.

Automating to play by the rules

The Olympic and Paralympic Games are arguably two of the most protected brand identities of all time. As a result, all partners must follow stringent guidelines set out by the organisers, and be acutely aware of how to use any intellectual property such as logos, symbols and historical images appropriately.

By automating the use of such content, brands can ensure everything is communicated and used as outlined be it in internal policies and training materials or pop-up stands and merchandise.

Automating to travel space and time

The scale of this opportunity presents obstacles when a brand needs to tailor a majority of content across multiple countries and languages. There is also the issue of recreating the same copy multiple times across different documents, an unnecessary and costly process.

Content automation can significantly streamline this by eliminating the constant manual duplication otherwise needed to present information in a format that meets the needs of customers, be that in print, PDF or an interactive format on the latest digital device. By embracing automation, content creators move from authoring documents to creating reusable content components. Instead of creating one-off documents where content is locked into a specific document and format, authors create content components that can be assembled and delivered to multiple channels.

By eliminating copying, pasting and rekeying of information, organisations can be sure there are no conflicts between documentation and other collateral that is delivered to multiple channels. It also makes it simple to create localised versions for use across different geographical markets.

Automating to avoid legal issues

The Olympic and Paralympic Games have a series of laws to protect intellectual property from unauthorised use. For the Games themselves, the rights to intellectual property are authorised worldwide which, for legal teams, means all documents in each country must be law abiding.

Content automation can ensure the review process across legal and other departments is streamlined, with the right people controlling the right documents. It can also remove the need for legal teams to review different versions of the same content. For example, they can approve a disclaimer, which is then distributed across multiple documents and geographies.

What’s more, when the Games are over, assets can easily be reserved to the original versions with the click of a button.

The challenges surrounding multi-channel content publishing are especially apparent when brands look to associate themselves with such a large scale event. The birth of the internet was the first sign that traditional content processes might not work, but instead of rethinking their approach, many businesses simply added duplicate teams to be responsible for the web. When totalling the cost of creating, reviewing and approving content, running compliance checks, publishing and distributing the content, and then making updates to that content, it adds up to a significant allocation of resources.

The rise of digital content and mobile devices – even wearable tech like the Apple Watch – has resulted in more empowered, better-informed audiences with high expectations that need to be met. Customers not only expect content from Olympic and Paralympic partners across multiple channels, but also want it to be immediately accessible, relevant and engaging.

The challenge of multi-channel content publishing applies to every organisation whether it be visual branded elements in the public domain or all behind the scenes standard operating procedures and training materials that ensure a business runs smoothly and meets regulations. Content automation can act as an ideal solution – especially for creating content for events such as Rio 2016. When automation is appropriate, the results and the return on investment can be extremely valuable and subsequently improve the quality of published content for better customer engagement.

Gavin Drake

Gavin Drake


VP of Marketing at Quark Enterprise Solutions.