There were negative headlines in the world’s media even before the Rio Olympics began in August – accusations of heavy pollution in sailing areas, a wave of crime was predicted to hit spectators – even body parts washing up on Rio beaches set to host Olympic volleyball.

So did the Olympics press office end up floundering in the green-tinted deep end of the Olympic swimming pool as some suspected it would?

Not quite. My colleague Jamie Kightley took a look at the ‘PoolGate’ mystery in his blog earlier this month, where he suggested that particular situation was handled quite well. The wider picture is much the same – analysis of social media shows positive public sentiment throughout the Olympics outweighed the negative, despite a flurry of negative stories – and the fairly empty stands!

When it comes to events hosted by our clients, they certainly don’t come under the scrutiny the Rio Olympics was subjected to. Despite this, planning should be meticulous when hosting corporate events – particularly when these events are hosted on opposite sides of the world, namely in October in Gothenburg and Bangkok. This is why IBA has been involved in every step of our client’s event planning in August – from securing top industry journalists and influencers as attendees to drive post-event coverage, to simply putting together a schedule of activities. We’re counting down to October.

At IBA we don’t take our foot off the PR pedal during the summer months. We achieved some excellent U.S. coverage for our payments processing client thanks to a corporate social responsibility story pairing them with an NBA basketball team charity – a refreshing change to the ‘new product’ stories that many organisations limit themselves to.

And as always, the Pitch&Place team has been hard at work drafting, pitching and placing thought leadership content in the media to keep our clients front of mind for top tier journalists.

Do you have an opinion on whether developments over the last month at Rio 2016 have affected the prestige of the Olympics? If so, we’d love to read your comments below.

Simon Woolley is engagement specialist at IBA International

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