Winter Olympics: Bringing Cold Hard Cash to Sponsors & Athletes

Every two years the winter and summer Olympics brings with them billions of broadcasting dollars (reaching over 200 countries and territories worldwide), increased advertising spend, and for the few winning athletes--coveted lucrative endorsement deals.

Success at the games brings with it major endorsement dollars from advertisers who want to bring a champion into the fold. And because most Olympic sports pay little or nothing on their own (winning the gold medal for Team USA brings with it a $37,500 check for the winter games), the real value for the biggest athletes is in their marketing appeal--turning the podium into a platform for endorsement opportunities--those deals are often the lifeblood of an athlete's earning power. 

In between Olympic games, athletes earn money when they clinch event and championship titles in their sport and rake in cash from endorsement deals and sponsorships, paying to be faster, higher, and stronger.

For a short timeframe following the Olympics, from cereal and spring water to electronics and snowboards to fast food and eyewear to credit cards and cough drops to virtually pitching any product, international marketers and athletes gladly marry each other--vying for category exclusivity and the usage of designated Olympic recognition--to ride the snowfall of success together.