All of Lisa Baird’s work over the last two years will be on a world stage come August. As chief marketing officer for the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), Baird is the ringleader in charge of lighting a fire of enthusiasm in fans around the globe for Rio 2016.
Leading a team of 60 marketing and sales professionals at USOC, Baird is responsible for managing 35% of the USOC’s revenue in a calendar year through sponsorships. But after seven years in her role, Baird—who previously served as senior vice president of marketing and consumer products for the NFL—is up to the challenge, hardly able to contain her enthusiasm for the events surrounding the upcoming Summer Games. In the middle of one of her busiest weeks of the year, she talked with Marketing News about the ever-increasing requests for experiential marketing, how the USOC is staying ahead of the curve by marketing to a younger generation and what sponsors are doing to impress her the most.
Q: What is the biggest challenge you face in marketing the Olympic Games?