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31: U.S. Olympic Committee CMO Lisa Baird is in it for the long run

Lisa Baird

Lisa Baird was named CMO of the United States Olympic Committee in 2009. Prior to that, she served in brand and marketing roles for Proctor & Gamble, GM, IBM and the NFL, among others.

With the Olympic Games occurring years apart, Lisa touches on how she maintains focus on long-term marketing goals: “The better and more articulate and more precise your mission and your purpose is — that needs to act as your long-term guide, says Baird. “You should measure everything you do against ‘Are you fulfilling that mission and purpose?’ … Putting the right measurements in place for the long term help you to keep that true north on your compass.”

But even though her goals invariably seem to reside on a distant horizon, she avoids the predictive, instead focusing on something she believes will remain constant: “Marketers who always focus on their customers’ or their stakeholders’ problems — and listen to them and solve their problems — will always win.”

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today” podcast include:

  • Managing the balancing act of athletes trying to make a living and Olympic sponsors who make things run: Baird talks about IOC Rule 40. (4:47)
  • Keeping the flame alive: Maintaining focus on the Olympics during off years. (7:58)
  • Who’ll win the Olympic jump ball for 2024: Los Angeles, Budapest or Paris? (10:11)
  • Trying to please everyone: The art of listening in a sea of stakeholders. (11:49)
  • Going for gold: Measuring marketing success in the land of not-for-profit. (14:42)
  • Baird discusses sponsor and license partnerships and their role in helping the U.S. reach the medal podium. (16:20)
  • You can’t always rely on metrics: “Human beings are spontaneous; they can surprise you.” (23:15)

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