Tokyo Stadium, photo by Tokyo LOC
This is my five deep thoughts on the challenges we might consider today for Tokyo..
updated 28 April 2021
Five things We know today about the Olympics
1. The Olympics in Tokyo will be compromised due to the pandemic, but most of all, the lost in translation issues between IOC, LOC and Japanese Goverment.
The international Olympic committee’s ability to use doublespeak is only surpassed by the communications from the Vatican. No one knows where the IOC, LOC or Japanese government stands on anything.
2. The lack of foreign fans will cost Tokyo billions of dollars.
Foreign fans, through ticket sales, food and souvenirs, hotels and taxes would have contributed $10-$23 billion, per Japanese media. Tokyo 2021 could loose its shirt.
3. Could be largest tv audience in Olympic history if NBC opens all media and allows sites like RunBlogRun access to increase traffic number. Terrestrial TV is the biggest winner, with few fans being allowed. NBC sports could win big if it opens its content to all media to build audience.
4. The athletes village in a non pandemic year is a caldron for colds and flus. In 2021, the LOC will be over taxed by telling young athletes “no”. It is Petri dish.
My biggest fear of the Games is the global spreader that could come from the Olympic village. In MontrÃ©al 1976, the flu, diarrhea and colds passed around more than autographs.
5. Change is constant in Tokyo. If the IOC had truly cared about the brand, they would have moved Tokyo until 2032, cancelled Beijing 2022, and moved Olympic brand to 2024 Paris. The IOC needs an ombudsman. Someone who can tell Thomas Bach to practice saying “no”.
The IOC is pompous. Some love that. It is a near global religion. We ask the IOC not to screw it up. A stoic Tokyo Olympics is not what worries me. A global marketer would be, should be, and could be more worried if the pandemic is seen to be spread by returning athletes from 209 countries.