Qantas has been named the top sponsor of the Australian Olympic Committee, ahead of Telstra.
The airline was praised for its “excellence in Olympic sponsorship leveraging”, at the first AOC Inspiration Awards for Excellence in Olympic Marketing.
Its campaign included a TVC integrating athletes with the "You're the reason we fly" tagline, and even an in-flight safety video with the Olympic team.
An independent judging panel including former CEO, Ian Elliott, Olympian Lisa Forrest, media buyer Harold Mitchell and AOC Executive Committee member Russ Withers described it as “one of the most comprehensive campaigns ever witnessed” and said it was “unsurpassed” in results.
Lewis Pullen, executive manager marketing, said: "Qantas is proud to accept this award. We’ve been getting behind the Australian Olympic Team for over 60 years because we believe in the values the Olympics represent.
“We are pleased to have played our part in supporting the Team, as a sponsor and as official airline and the Gold Inspiration Award is testament to our commitment to the Australian Olympic Team.”
Telstra was handed the silver award for its campaign asking people to send inspirational messages to the team.
Swisse and Coles were the bronze winners, with the supplements maker’s marketing everywhere throughout the games, and the supermarket using former Olympian Kathy Freeman in their campaign.
Mitchell said: “Mitchell said “Judging this prestigious award has left me with no doubt that Olympic sponsorship really works.”
Elliot added: “The creativity displayed by brands, both big and small, in leveraging their Olympic sponsorship has been remarkable. They demonstrated, from the most integrated and comprehensive to very targeted campaigns, how brands can effectively connect with consumers through the Olympic Team.”