Described as a revolution in real-time marketing, Lagardère Unlimited, in partnership with ASICS America, launched the world’s first in-event, real-time television commercial (TVC) last weekend.
The spot, which ran during the ITU World Triathlon Chicago event on Saturday 28 June, on Universal Sports Network, is ‘the first ever TVC to be shot, produced and broadcast in-event using real-time content captured on location and via social media.’
The ground-breaking advertisement took viewers on a journey with world-ranked number 1 women’s triathlete, US Olympian and ASICS elite athlete Gwen Jorgensen, as she prepared for the world-class event. Jorgensen won ITU World Triathlon Chicago in a swift 1:55:33.
The 15-second spot begins with real-time weather data and event footage captured just moments before the start of the race mixed with real-time video highlights and tweets of encouragement for Jorgensen as she starts off the triathlon on the shores of Lake Michigan.
As a Main Sponsor and Official Apparel Partner of ITU World Triathlon Chicago and with Jorgensen competing as a race favourite, ASICS America was ‘thrilled about the opportunity to work with Lagardère Unlimited on producing this unique commercial.’
“We think this is an authentic way to elevate the experience of our fans and make them feel connected to Gwen in those final moments of preparation before the event,” said Shannon Scott, ASICS America Director of Marketing Communications. “What excited us about this concept was the ability to build a brand story, involve our fans in the process, while still maintaining enough control to ensure it was uniquely on-brand to ASICS.”
As one of the world’s premier sports and entertainment agencies with over US$5 billion of sports and entertainment rights under management, Lagardère Unlimited saw the move to real-time broadcasting as a natural progression of its innovative digital and media offerings.
“We’ve been working with brands for many years on creative ways to engage with consumers and harness the energy surrounding major televised events,” said Al Silvestri, Senior Vice President of Marketing & New Media at Lagardère Unlimited Consulting.
“Now with our Real-Time Broadcast platform, brands are able to take this engagement to the next level and tap into consumer passion at the precise moment it’s most relevant – that’s incredibly valuable for marketers.”
Silvestri also noted the benefit of this platform in helping brands stay on top of the increasingly rapid demands of real-time marketing.
“Since every second counts with real-time marketing and decisions need to be made on the fly, our ability to create an automated process to pull, package, and push content to all platforms in a matter of minutes provides brands with incredible creative possibilities and control,” concluded Silvestri.
As the co-producer alongside USA Triathlon and official rights holder of the ITU World Triathlon Series, Lagardère Unlimited saw the event as the ideal moment to launch its platform and worked in close partnership with Universal Sports Network to create and broadcast the spot to the US audience.
Although the concept of digital real-time marketing has been around for some time, Silvestri notes that the evolution to broadcast within real-time advertising is the logical next step for brands.
“Social media and platforms like Twitter have opened the flood gates to real-time marketing initiatives,” said Silvestri. “This development in real-time advertising takes the concept of social media engagement and catapults it to the next level by providing brands the ability to deliver contextually relevant and timely marketing messages within the broadcast medium.”
Lagardère Unlimited, a division of the US$10 billion Lagardère Group, is a world-leading sports and entertainment agency. As part of a network of more than 22,500 employees working across 30 countries worldwide, Lagardère Unlimited draws on its ‘extensive global reach and deep understanding of the industry to develop strategies that connect brands with consumers through access to unique sports and entertainment properties.’
The City of Chicago joins the ITU World Triathlon Series in 2014 and 2015, including the 2015 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final and Age Group World Championships. One of just eight series events around the globe in 2014, Chicago will welcome 130 of the world’s top Olympic-distance triathletes alongside such cities as Auckland, Cape Town, Yokohama, London, Hamburg, Stockholm and Edmonton.
In addition to the elite races, the event features top-flight Olympic- and sprint-distance age-group races, as well as two relay options, offering amateurs the chance to compete in the same epic venue as the world’s best athletes. Launched in 2009, and re-branded in 2011, the ITU World Triathlon Series is televised in more than 160 countries.