By Barry Janoff
July 12, 2012: Michael Phelps, who will be attempting to win seven gold medals at the 2012 Summer Olympics, gets the gold in a new commercial from Visa that is part of the financial firm and credit card company's "Go World" effort.
Phelps won a record eight golds at the 2008 Games in Beijing, and the 30-second spot focuses on the seventh of the eight, the 100-meter butterfly, which Phelps won by 100th of a second over Milorad Cavic.
Phelps, who also won six gold medals and two bronze at the 2004 Games in Athens, will this time be competing in seven events at the Games, which begin July 27.
According to the company, this is the latest in a series of ads that "underscore and celebrate the role that fan’s support and cheering plays in propelling the world’s greatest athletes to victory."
In the commercial, "100th Of A Second," Visa voiceover flagbearer Morgan Freeman explains what happens in more than 100th of a second, the time in which Michael Phelps won his seventh or eight gold medals at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.
"A 100th of second is faster than the blink of an eye. Faster than a flash of lightening. And it was the difference between Michael Phelps winning eight gold medals instead of seven. A hundredth of a second. Just think of the cheers if lightening strikes twice."
The spot interweaves action from the spotlighted race with images of things that happen in more than 100th of a sedan, including the beating of a hummingbird’s wings and a computer's input reaction.
"This is the latest in a series of ads that celebrate the role that fan’s support and cheering plays in propelling the world’s greatest athletes to victory."
The spot ends with the Visa mantra: "Supporting athletes and the Olympic Games for more than 25 years." (See the full spot here.)
The new Phelps commercial will break this weekend. It follows such Visa Go World spots as the umbrella "The Difference" spot and commercials higgling Visa Team athletes including Lopez Lomong, Nadia Comaneci, Yelena Isinbaeva and David Boudia. Lead agency is TBWA/Chiat/Day Los Angeles.
Visa is supporting with strong social media presence. Visa’s Facebook page is encouraging people to create, share and view cheers (via photos, videos and posts) for 69 Team Visa athletes around the world. People can also post cheers and view additional commercials at Visa’s YouTube Channel and on Twitter.
In addition to Visa, other global partners of the International and U.S. Olympic Committees are Acer, Atos, Coca-Cola, Dow, GE, McDonald's, Omega, Panasonic, P&G, Samsung and Visa.
Visa Is A Go World For London Olympics
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