Planning to hijack Olympic hashtags? Marketers, beware

Brand managers for non-sponsor organizations must be vigilant to ensure that their content doesn’t contain references that the IOC says violates trademark rules.

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However, unless you work for or on behalf of any of the following companies, tread very cautiously if you plan on doing anything Olympics-themed in your social media content over the next few weeks:

For PR and marketing pros at the companies listed above, the Olympic Games offer a plethora of opportunities to interact with consumers and attract eyeballs. Everyone else—good luck with your vague, non-specific sports references.

RELATED: Reach an audience of 6 million Ragan and PR Daily readers through event and content sponsorship.

Even if your company sponsors an Olympic athlete, the International Olympic Committee’s infamous Rule 40 states that “no competitor, coach, trainer or official who participates in the Olympic Games may allow his person, name, picture or sports performances to be used for advertising purposes during the Olympic Games.”

Trademark rules are particularly fierce surrounding the Olympics, making just about any reference to the games verboten.

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