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Fraich’Touch Agency: brands who win the Olympics will be those who understand the Games are bigger than sport

Strategic marketing experts and talent management agency Fraich’Touch specializes in developing the public careers of athletes, health professionals, sporting content creators, and foodies. In this interview, Fraich’Touch co-founder Goulven Cornec explains how Olympic themes and new content formats provide brands with rich opportunities to run impactful influencer marketing campaigns around the Games. 

Goulven Cornec
Goulven Cornec

To what extent do you think Paris2024 will be the Olympics of Influence? 

We’re already finding that large budgets are being redirected towards sport, whether with Official Partners or not, because everyone wants to surf the wave of the Olympic Games. About 60% of the assignments we have today include sports, which is colossal. The idea already plays a major role in the global strategies of brands, companies and even public authorities wanting to associate themselves with sport and health. 

We’re seeing a boom around sport and getting the French population moving in brand campaigns. Unfortunately, this doesn't necessarily benefit the athletes, but rather the content creators. We're being contacted by non-sporty content creators who want to get involved in sport and its other aspects on social networks. 

What’s positive is that the message is going in the right direction, in terms of getting people moving, being healthy, feeling good, and reducing one’s mental load through sport. All these issues revolve around this wonderful event that we’re hosting in France. 

During the Games, even if the bidding war in influence hasn't started yet, it's going to be a joyful, bloody one-upmanship between the different Olympic Partners to activate the best talents of the Games, to generate the maximum virality on social media. 

As an industry, the question we’re asking ourselves is whether the hundreds of millions of Euros being injected into influencer marketing around physical activity messages that are being promoted today will just blow over in September 2024, or is there a real desire to use the Games as an impetus for a new way of communicating? 

I hope all this exposure can help little-known or poorly-financed sports to find better funding, and redistribute more to sportsmen and women. All these issues are very much at stake in Influence Marketing this year. 

Are there risks for creators in relation to the Olympics? 

There's a purely financial risk which we’ve identified in that creators not involved in sports on social networks are making less money. There is a budgetary upheaval from brands who typically use creators outside the sports field, [but are moving in that direction to align with the Games]. There's also the potential risk of the wrong message being communicated by creators who are not specialized or educated in sports. Let’s get the two worlds of non-sporting creators and top-level sports men and women talking together to convey the best message. 

Paris2024 will see consumption of Olympics content continue to drift from linear TV to digital platforms; what impact will this have on influence campaigns? 

We need to create dynamism. We can't just say: I'm going to talk about sports for sports’ sake. Sports content creators are gradually raising their prices in sport, because many are already fully booked. For the brands just waking up now, it's almost too late to get the best creators on the market. Above all, we need to create affinity and effective projects around real messages. [We must] conform to today's consumption codes. What’s important is the athlete’s story. How they got to the starting line, how they train, and what’s happening inside their head in the seconds before the race starts. Today's audience isn't necessarily interested in the few seconds the race lasts. We're happy if our athletes win a medal, but what do we remember? We retain the story, the experience. The brands that position themselves as insiders to the Games will be the big winners. 

Can you expand on how the worlds of sport and content creation will collide around the Olympics? 

Today, there are content creators who are ten times more powerful in terms of audience than a top-level sportsperson who nevertheless has much more merit, on paper, to be in the media. Tomorrow, what we expect from these creators, is not to talk about themselves, but to talk about others. Content creators need to understand that this year, those in the spotlight might be almost anonymous, elite athletes, who have to hold a job down on the side because they can’t make ends meet through sport.

I'm not saying content creators are self-centered, but it's an environment where people often talk about themselves before talking about others. That’s what the community wants. This year is going to be much more about Team Paris2024; about teams created between athletes and content creators. I don't see either athletes or content creators communicating on their own. There's a huge, strident boundary between the two around partnerships: a content creator does partnerships, an athlete does sponsorships. These two terms are diametrically opposed. But we're finally going to be able to bring them together and put athletes and content creators on the same footing.

What is the risk that audiences will be turned off by the deluge of Olympics content? 

There's a huge wave arriving of all these medium-sized communications; we’re told that 60% of campaigns today are related to sport. Clearly people will get sick of it. Nevertheless, a lot of brands are not going to be able to directly use the Games. They're going to communicate in slightly different ways, perhaps by supporting an athlete, promoting a prevention message, or physical activity. The Olympics and Paralympics last four weeks, which is not enough time to get the audience too riled up. 

It's a question of how you approach campaigns as to whether people get annoyed by them. Today's big brands make huge strategic mistakes, and will completely undermine their audience if they take a TV-advertising approach to social media. 

The Games represent so much more than sports. We see Paralympians getting cyber harassed, racial abuse, issues of acceptance linked to the LGBTQ community. These messages are booming in the sports world and all are linked to Paris. The Olympics is not just about sports and physical activity, it’s linking it all together. Where we’re going to win is by thinking about strategy before we think about profitability. Do I prefer profitability over a story that will endure long after the Games are over? That’s the key.

About Kolsquare

Kolsquare is Europe’s leading Influencer Marketing platform, a data-driven solution that allows brands to scale their KOL Marketing strategies and implement authentic partnerships with KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders). Kolsquare’s technology enables marketing professionals to easily identify the best Content Creators profiles by filtering their content and audience, and to build and manage their campaigns from A to Z, including measuring results and benchmarking performance against competitors. Kolsquare has built the largest community of influencer marketing experts in the world, and offers hundreds of customers (Coca-Cola, Netflix, Sony Music, Publicis, Sézane, Sephora, El Corte Inglés, Lacoste, …) the latest Big Data, AI and Machine Learning technologies to drive inspiring partnerships, tapping into an exhaustive network covering 100% of  KOLs with more than 5,000 followers in 180 countries on Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. As a Benefit Company, Kolsquare has been pioneering Responsible Influence by championing transparency, ethical practices, and meaningful collaborations to inspire change.

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