Branding in China works differently than elsewhere in the world, marketing guru Tom Doctoroff, the chief executive for Greater China at J. Walter Thompson, the advertising agency, says in the New York Times, looking back at the Beijing Olympics.
“You have to define the sport and be a master of the universe,” Mr. Doctoroff said. “It’s extremely imperial. Anyone who can’t be the emperor of basketball or the queen of tennis won’t make it.”
That would be bad news for the lower Olympic gods and their perspective to make a living from marketing. Even former champion Liu Xiang might have lost his position in China. Doctoroff in the New York Times:
“It’s like leading mice to cheese,” said Tom Doctoroff, referring to athletes and the Chinese market. “The question is, do these celebrities have what it takes to make it in China?”
More than most countries, sports marketing experts say, Chinese fans will back only athletes with personality and a long winning streak, meaning many top athletes may fall flat here.
Tom Doctoroff is one of our specialists focusing on branding in China at the China Speakers Bureau. If you are interested in having him as a speaker, do get in touch with one of our offices, like our US-office at +1 413 323 4356.
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