5 Lessons from the World Cup for Marketers

What Marketers Can Learn From the World Cup

The World Cup is no doubt one of the biggest events on Earth.

As its broadcast globally and automatically attracts millions of spectators, it’s the perfect chance for companies to reach out to a large, attentive audience.

Inevitably, this kind of publicity is highly sought after so as kick off approaches, the big brands will start competing to get people to buy their products.

We’ve taken a look at the growing trends in this type of advertising and thought about what we can learn from them; How can it help us better understand the different ways to advertise a brand to successfully appeal to such a diverse audience that The World Cup offers?

1. Togetherness 

The first thing you will notice about many advertisements during the World Cup is the ‘Inclusion Factor’. The event is about bringing people together from all around the World so your brand and how you advertise should do the same. Of course this seems obvious for a global event but even beyond, some of the best campaigns work on this premise, a great example being the new Vauxhall #StandTogether TV advertising campaign.

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2. Create emotion 

Advertisements fuelled by the World Cup draw on the strength of inciting an emotion. Whether this is by taking advantage of patriotism or by evoking peoples’ desire to be just like their sporting heroes, there’s no denying that if you can tug at someone’s emotions they are more likely to remember the adverts and therefore your brand. Emotional connections are a brilliant way to engage an audience and a wonderful example of this being the Nike advertisement ‘Risk Everything’.

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3. Social, social, social 

It’s 2014 and the era of Social Media is in full swing. Businesses are now creating entire strategies around Social Media as the engagement it offers with customers can help create a positive brand awareness through real time interaction. A great example of this is the Beats by Dre Facebook page which they have re-branded solely with their World Cup campaign and have continuously posted to help drive engagement. Remember, a well-crafted, well-timed, topical post has the potential to reach millions without the need to pay millions in advertisement fees. Expect the social site Twitter to be a highly used form of advertising and brand awareness during The World Cup, as companies utilise it to tweet about events as and when they happen #WorldCup.

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4. “Remember that advert…” 

Now, the goal of any advert is to be memorable but it should also make people remember the company it represents. The best campaigns are not always the one with the biggest stars; sure people will remember the advert with Cristiano Ronaldo in it but will they remember the company it was for? Having a clear brand presence throughout an advert with a well tied in storyline will help consumers remember the connection between it and the brand. A great example of this is the Pepsi advert which showcases the product and brand throughout the advert.

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5. And finally, substitutions

When it’s all started, don’t just rely on your set strategy to see you through to the end. The best way to draw and maintain attention is to adapt and react to events as they happen. This doesn’t just apply to The World Cup but to any major event; you need to be continuously topical. So, if a specific team win or an amazing goal happens, or in the case of this year’s World Cup the reigning holders Spain get knocked out, be ready to incorporate that into your strategies.

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 Social Media is a great way to instantly do this but if you prepare well you can be quick to jump on it with print, TV and radio advertisements, making that well known event synonymous with your brand.

These points are all key things marketers will be including into their strategy over The World Cup event and should be used as a great starting point for any future campaigns because the way a business markets itself will always affect the potential success it can achieve.

In the end creating an advertisement isn’t just about selling your goods or service, it’s about creating awareness of your brand. Now with the largest target audience than even before thanks to Social Media and the ease it brings for people to share views, creating a positive image is even more important.

Guest blog written by Jason Young at Blue Octopus Recruitment to find out more about Blue Octopus please see our website www.blueoctopus.co.uk

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  • csswapan

    Really, its great way to go with the time for branding our efforts using great events on earth. Thanks for the real time issue bring it in our sense of “what to do” now!

  • Daniel DMiddy Magrin

    It’s great how companies are using the world cup in many ways to help interact with their communities. You can check out our Unofficial Social Media Guide to the 2014 FIFA World Cup to help keep up to date with what is going on in Brazil.

  • sophia solano

    Really awesome Jason Young


  • Sau Paulo

    Hi ,

    Thanks for the post about World Cup. Just a tip about those who don’t live in countries that stream world cup online. You can use UnoTelly to remove the geoblock and stream World Cup 2014 in your country free https://worldcup.unotelly.com

  • SDLjames

    The great marketing challenge awaits, how will the new found national interest in the US for soccer be seized upon as an opportunity to harbour long term commitment to the beautiful game in a new market?

    I have written a few thoughts on this brand commitment opportunity http://blog.sdl.com/digital-experience/4-tips-usmnt-convert-new-soccer-fans-long-term-consumers/

    By extension, all these reactive brand marketing pieces, not particularly tied to a campaign, how do they convert into an affinity with a brand beyond making something highly shareable?

    James Ainsworth

    Senior Content Marketing Manager, SDL