Athens 2004 Olympics Case Study
Original and new
The challenge for each Olympic Games is not only to re-emphasize the original Olympic ideals, but also to move them into the future. As most world cultures recognize Greece as a cradle of civilization, what better place than Athens, hosts to the 2004 Games, to represent the Olympic ideals and develop them into the future?
Inclusive and worldwide
Wolff Olins beat 242 other competitors to produce a winning brand which is not only very contemporary in communication terms, but one which rests on a simple inclusive view of the world. Our brand idea for Athens 2004 was 'embracing the world'. The Games in the past tended to reflect the national attitude of the host city. With Athens, the Games came home to Greece, but the brand expresses a vision that is inclusive and worldwide. With our Greek partners Red Design, we gave the Athens Games a distinct and engaging logo. The vibrant blue and white echo the national colors of modern Greece, while the olive branch expresses the essence of the original games and conveys a universal message.
Transcending and attracting
An engaging brand can pay huge dividends, not only in establishing the Games, but making them transcend the calendar. The Athens 2004 brand helped the event live before, during and after the two weeks themselves, and was particularly effective in attracting sponsorship. As the International Herald Tribune reported on 8 August 2001, 'Organisers said the strong performance in getting big contracts from sponsors was attributable in part to the marketing theme of "bringing the Games home" to the birthplace of the Olympics.'