October 23 - American company NBC Universal will mark the 100-day countdown to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi by starting a major promotional campaign next Tuesday (October 29).
At 8pm that day all of the company's 20 networks will air the same promotional video at the same time, the start of a series of adverts that will promote their coverage of the Games in the United States.
The Games are due to officially start on February 7, although men's and women's snowboard slopestyle, women's freestyle moguls and team figure skating are due to take place the day before the Opening Ceremony, when NBC's coverage will start.
The campaign will be orchestrated by NBC Universal Symphony, an internal multiplatform marketing initiative designed to wield resources across the company's considerable portfolio around key events.
"The 100-day mark is the moment when our considerable Olympic campaign kicks into another gear," said John Miller, chief marketing officer of NBC Sports Group.
"As a Symphony priority, it's invaluable to have so many parts of the company - 20 channels, 65 websites and the full strength of Comcast [the biggest shareholder of NBC] - playing together with singular focus to make our campaign come to life and make the Sochi Olympics a massive television event."
Four Olympic adverts have been commissioned and are narrated by Giancarlo Esposito, who has appeared in films like The Usual Suspect and is currently starring in the television drama Revolution.
"I'm a longtime athlete and have never been a professional and never played sports in school," Esposito said.
"So when I was a young boy the highlight of my life was to watch the Summer Olympics, and you had to wait those four years...and then to see the winter Olympics, it was one of the biggest highlights of my life because I always wanted to be able to compete that way.
"What I love about the Olympics is that they're people who are the common man and woman, everyday people who have the opportunity and the chance to prove to themselves that there is something inside them, a dream that can be fulfilled, and to me the Olympics for America is everything."
NBC Universal will also work with its family of over 230 local broadcast affiliates to air locally-focused spots leading up to Sochi 2014, as well as air local news coverage and specific promos about local Olympic athletes and events in their regions.
In the final month leading up to the Games, NBC Universal will prioritise its Olympic promotional adverts across its 18 cable channels.
In addition, Comcast will distribute promotional material to its 22 million homes, including direct mailings, video guides and video on demand features.
The campaign will also reach 14 out-of-home networks including Costco and Walmart stores, in-dining networks, New York City taxi cabs and Port Authority Trans-Hudson trains.
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