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By Tony Connelly, Sports Marketing Reporter

April 28, 2016 | 2 min read

As is a continuing trend with sports sponsorship activations Nissan is placing fans at the centre of its Rio Olympic campaign with two new films showing supporters from across the UK training alongside Team GB athletes with the help of Facebook Live.

Nissan ambassadors and Team GB athletes Max Whitlock (Gymnastics), Kat Copeland (Rowing) and ParalympicsGB gold medallist Richard Whitehead (Athletics) star in the films as they train live with members of the public.

The films document the ‘Be the Heartbeat of Britain’ live training sessions, which took place on Facebook Live on 10 February as part of Nissan's official sponsorship for the Games. During the sessions fans were given the chance to connect with the athletes in real-time via Facebook Live and were then able to experience the gruelling training regime undertaken by the Olympians.

Two of the more elderly participants who took part in the campaign were Charm and Chris Ronson, aged 75 and 77, from Cumbria.

Commenting on the experience Charm said: “It was an amazing and inspiring experience. I hope that by being part of this we were able to let these athletes know that they aren’t alone when they wake up early in the morning for gruelling training sessions, and that the whole nation is behind them as they prepare for and eventually head off to Rio”.

Nissan’s marketing communications manager, Marc Palmer, said: “Nissan is incredibly proud of its work with the BOA and BPA. We are dedicated to innovation that excites and hope that this partnership will make the hearts of the British public beat a little faster.”

British Olympic Association chief executive, Bill Sweeney, said they were “delighted” with the “innovative approach” Nissan had taken with the partnership.

British Paralympic chief executive, Tim Hollingsworth, said Nissan’s support would “help us further our success and engage more supporters during the Rio 2016 Games.”

The theme of the campaign mirrors that of Panasonic and Proctor and Gamble who have both engaged with users across social to rally messages of support for the athletes heading to Rio.

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