Olympic Marketing

UPS Launches First Post-Olympics Campaign

Ads Feature Chinese Actor Zhang Fengyi and the Mythical Monkey King

By Published on .

UPS has launched a post-Olympic campaign in Greater China
UPS has launched a post-Olympic campaign in Greater China

BEIJING (AdAgeChina.com) -- United Parcel Service (UPS) is continuing to use its Olympic Games sponsorship to boost brand awareness among small-to-medium enterprises in China.

In late October, the package delivery company rolled out its first post-Olympics advertising in Greater China in TV, English- and Chinese-language print titles, outdoor posters and online media in China and Hong Kong. UPS also created a Chinese-language web site, http://www.delivermore.ups.com, that will run through mid-December.

In a 30" TV spot, Chinese actor Zhang Fengyi reprises his role from previous campaigns as a UPS hero. He helps a young boy solve his father's delivery tasks, so the father can spend more time with his child. The spot also makes references to the Monkey King, a powerful character who appears in local mythology across Asia, including China, and is known for his dexterity, wit and flexibility in tackling challenges.

UPS hopes the campaign will reach Chinese factory owners and business entrepreneurs who need to set up and maintain reliable, complex international distribution systems to ship overseas the clothes, toys and other products produced in factories across the mainland.

The company has used the Olympics in China to prove its capabilities from the start. UPS has partnered with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as a TOP, or global, sponsor of the games since 1994. But its relationship with the organizers of the 2008 Olympic Games was far more extensive than past sponsorships.
UPS handled all Olympic logistics during the games
UPS handled all Olympic logistics during the games

Previously, the company mostly provided ticket distribution and international express letter and package delivery services for athletes and journalists. In China, UPS became the right arm for the Beijing Olympic organizing committee, helping to develop and execute the operating plan for the 2008 Olympic Games and providing express delivery services to all venues.

UPS helped transport almost everything required to pull off the games--refrigerators, computer equipment, furniture, food and beverages, and sports equipment right down to the flooring in the gymnasiums.

In effect, UPS used the Olympic Games as a massive demonstration of its package delivery, supply chain and freight services to jumpstart its presence in the mainland. Compared to global rivals Federal Express and DHL, UPS was a latecomer to China. The Atlanta, Ga.-based company only set up a wholly-owned operation in the mainland in 2005, years after its competitors had established a solid business there.

"We're a 100-year-old company, but in China, we're relatively young. As a brand, UPS didn't exist prior to 2005; people here didn't know what UPS stands for. The Olympics are proven as a platform, and people associate best-in-class brands with it," said Peter Tan, director of UPS's Olympic marketing program, earlier this year.

UPS's Olympic marketing strategy was created with McCann Erickson Guangming in Beijing; McCann's below-the-line arm MRM; Ogilvy PR; sports marketing specialist Zou Marketing and Carlson Marketing, a hospitality agency that coordinated UPS's overseas VIP visitors in Beijing during the Olympic Games in August.

New ads feature Chinese actor Zhang Fengyi and the mythical Monkey King
New ads feature Chinese actor Zhang Fengyi and the mythical Monkey King

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