Not only were Team GB under pressure to deliver gold medals at London 2012, there was a lot at stake in terms of retail sales boosting the UK economy.
There were some improvements in sales of FMCG products during the period but typical changes in the British weather, at the same time, was undoubtedly a factor. As most of the athletic action took place in London it is probably not a complete coincidence that London grew the most in terms of value sales % change versus last year (+ 5.7%) compared to the other regions. Overall though, once the effect of weather is removed, it seems that the Olympics did not provide the massive sales catalyst that George Osbourne amongst others may have hoped for.
Funnily enough it is the micro-trends that would provoke the most entertaining dinner party conversation. Cadbury, an official sponsor and “treat” provider – if honed athletes have got room for treats in their sophisticated nutritional regimes – helped grow confectionery assortments by a whopping 45% in Major Multiples during the 3 week period and generally increased their share in chocolate confectionery. But as the nation was inspired by sporting prowess they became creative, wanting to be a part of it all. Jenga Olympics, using Starburst and making Olympic ring decorations from party ring biscuits, not to mention the increase in tattoos and subsequent need for baby lotion to help the healing process all helped to lift sales – effects that category and brand managers would presumably be pleased with, if not anticipated.
Now we are all hooked, roll on Rio …