nike’s ambush marketing at the london 2012 games through the use of colour

Karen Haller 01
Karen Haller

Nike's ambush marketing using colour at the London 2012 Games.

If you watched the London 2012 Games this summer there is every chance you saw flashes of neon yellow on the track, worn by many athletes from many countries.

(Day 10 into my 30 blogs in 30 days challenge!)

It’s understandable if you thought Nike was one of the official sponsors of the the London 2012 Games. They weren’t.

Adidas paid in the excess of $150 million to be an official Olympic sponsor. Nike did what was is called in the advertising and business world as ambush marketing.

And Nike knew exactly what they were doing…

ambush marketing using colour
It wasn’t by chance Nike chose neon yellow which they call  ‘The Volt’ as the colour for their high-tech Nike Volt range – a collection of footwear designed especially for the London 2012 Games.

This is because Yellow  is the most visible colour in daylight.

Mr. Lotti, Nike’s global creative director said “The Volt is our signature color for Nike, it’s our Tiffany Blue. Of course, it’s no accident that we picked that color. The whole point of this was to create impact.” They got the results they were after.

The Daily Mail reports ‘an incredible tally of more than 400 athletes wore the brightly coloured trainers – meaning that barely an event went by without them making an appearance.’

Nike Volt shoes London 2012 Games - photographer Andy Hooper. This opens a new browser window.

Daily Mail | Nike Volt shoes London 2012 Games | Photographer Andy Hooper


The shoe is now so ‘famous’ it is already in the Victoria & Albert Museum, London.

Nike volt shoes London 2012 Games Victorian and Albert museum.


I’d love to know what Adidas thought about this. Know of any other colour ambush marketing campaigns? I’d love to hear about them.


If you love the colour yellow like I do you can check out my other yellow related blog posts.

Part of my 30 blogs in 30 days challenge series. Check out my other posts.

Sources: and
Images: Karen Haller and Andy Hooper.

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