Mengniu and the winter Olympics - food tech news in Asia

At the beginning of March, at the end of the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, the Beijing Paralympic Winter Games have been slowly proceeding. Looking back at this year’s Winter Olympics, in addition to winning medals in various competitions, athletes have become “Internet celebrities” in discussions at every household; names such as Gu Ailing, Ren Ziwei, Su Yiming, and other athletes, have become famous. The sponsored brands that have gained a lot of market attention because of these athletes are Chinese dairy giants, Yili and Mengniu.

Yili is not only the sponsor of Chinese snowboarder, Su Yiming, but also the official dairy sponsor of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics. With the successful event of the Beijing Winter Olympics, Yili is definitely the biggest winner of this winter event, earning enough attention. In addition to Yili getting a lot of publicity in this event, its rival, Mengniu, also won people’s attention by sponsoring Gu Ailing.

Today we will review what sports marketing can bring to dairy enterprises in the context of slowing growth in this segment. What did the Winter Olympics bring to Mengniu?

In February this year, the Chinese women’s football team won the championship in the 2022 AFC Indian Women’s Asian Cup; this was undoubtedly the most talked-about news in the Chinese sports world. It also reflected on the online search term – Mengniu, who sponsored them; 320 million is the cumulative number of views of the topic #Mengniu’s first rewarding Chinese women’s football championship#, plus nearly 200 million readings of the topic #Chinese women’s football team for thanking Mengniu for 10 million reward#. Mengniu has gained more than 500 million views when the women’s football team won the championship. This is also one of the successful cases of cross-border sports marketing for consumer brands.

Now back to the Winter Olympics; shortly after the start of the Winter Olympics, Gu Ailing gave a perfect performance and won the gold medal, which not only successfully made herself the focus of attention, but also ignited the attention for the brands she endorsed. Among them, Mengniu was on the list which sponsored Gu Ailing at the end of 2019. Mengniu also took advantage of Gu Ailing’s popularity to win the championship and carried out multi-dimensional marketing campaigns, including the launch of documentaries, joint theme packaging, and other campaigns.

The continuous high-profile performance of Mengniu’s spokespersons has also given the brand a good public score for its marketing strategy. Social media in China created the phrase “you may not always believe in Mengniu, but you can always believe in Mengniu’s spokesperson”.

Sports marketing seems to have become another business gain opportunity, obtained by a group of dairy products after years of market exploration. With cross-border sports marketing, whether it is an event, a team, or an athlete, this channel can bring huge exposure to the brand, and can also greatly help improve consumers’ milk-drinking awareness and the conversion rate of consumers’ habits. This is no surprise why many dairy companies have begun engaging in sports marketing.

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