Olympics 2008 campaign: The Best of Us

It’s finally here. The calendar shows 08.08.08 — the date the Chinese hosts selected to open the 29th Olympic Games in Beijing.

All eyes and ears will turn to the opening ceremony and subsequent events in the Chinese capital for the next two weeks. We will be looking forward to the best of us competing for the noblest of ideals in the spirit of excellence, friendship and goodwill.

The build-up to the Beijing Olympics has seen a large number of television commercials and public service announcements (PSAs) using the Olympic theme. Some of them are quite clever, bringing out the best creativity of those who create moving image treats. Today, we feature one such campaign.

For the past year, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been running a global promotional campaign, titled “The Best of Us”. Its aim was to communicate the key Olympic values of Excellence, Friendship and Respect to a global youth audience.

The theme of “The Best of Us” is a simple, powerful idea that transcends cultures and borders, motivating young people around the world to participate in sport by proving that sport can bring out their best.

The campaign was developed by the Voluntarily United Group of Creative Agencies (United), part of WPP. This first phase of creative development was led by Sra Rushmore/United, Madrid. The two PSAs are accompanied by a viral video as well as print and digital media items.

Here are the two PSAs:

Teens (above): The “Teens” television advert communicates that being an athlete can help teens overcome their insecurities – either real or those imposed by their peers. It aims to demonstrate how sport can play an important role in boosting young people’s confidence. The film features young athletes from across the world, including Armenia, Belgium, Brazil, China, Egypt, Germany, Ghana, India, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Russia and the United States.

Heroes (above): Legendary Olympic athletes including Roger Federer, Yao Ming, Laure Manaudou, Liu Xiang and Yelena Isinbayeva are among the stars of the International Olympic Committee’s public service announcement entitled “Heroes”. “Heroes” leverages the determination and performance of Olympic athletes to communicate the key Olympic values. The campaign also stars Kenenisa Bekele, Haile Gebrselelassie, Vanessa Ferrari and Carolina Kluft who, along with those mentioned above, star as superheroes seeking to achieve the seemingly impossible.

And finally, here are two of the seven print media posters that made up the Best of Us campaign:

More about the Best of Us campaign on IOC website