McDonald’s allows sports fans to support athletes with #CheersToSochi

Ahead of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, scheduled to take place from 6 to 23 February, a global Olympic partner McDonald’s is rolling out a social media effort to connect athletes with the broad fan community. Fans are given an opportunity to wish good luck to their favorite athletes or teams. The messages will appear on the special display in Athletes’ Village in Sochi as well as on the bracelets the sports heroes will wear.

The message of support can be shared using the hashtag #CheersToSochi or from the micro site. To send the personalized wish, users are to enter their e-mails, an athlete’s name, choose his country and team he or she represents. It won’t be a one-direction communication—athletes can wear the printed messages on the special ribbons around their wrists and also tweet back.

So far, nearly 600 messages have been shared. While the online destination allows to send messages to the members of teams from all participating countries, most of the messages have been sent to support athletes from the USA and Canada. The tweets are featured at the top of the page, and profiles of six USA and Canada athletes are placed at the bottom. The site is available in four languages—English, French, Spanish and Russian.

“McDonald’s takes tremendous pride in our 38-year partnership of the Games, and we share in the International Olympic Committee’s passion for bringing the world together,” said Steve Easterbrook, global chief brand officer for McDonald’s Corporation. “This Olympic experience gives fans the ability to make personal connections with athletes in Sochi in a way they’ve never had before.”

It’s just one of the engagement efforts launched by McDonald’s as part of this year’s Olympics campaign. The major fast-food chain will also bring together kids in Sochi, enabling them to be in the middle of the Games as part of the Champions of Play program, promoting healthy and active lifestyles. Kids will be able to attend Olympic events to see the competitions in real time, meet athletes and also embark on a tour across select Olympic venues to get an exclusive insight into the event.