Panini America

Case Study Panini America

Partnership Overview

Panini, the world’s largest collectable company, has a storied history with soccer on many levels, but most notably as the publisher of the Official FIFA World Cup Sticker Album. The global phenomenon of Panini World Cup sticker collecting was first introduced to America with the 2010 World Cup and collections since have included World Cup 2014 and 2018, as well as Copa America Centenario in 2015.

Our Role

GESM, in partnership with our sister agency AC&M, has been by Panini America’s side throughout this entire journey providing strategic, grassroots, media, and digital marketing support.

Core consumers for the Panini World Cup Album are expats hailing from countries rich in soccer culture, most notably, Hispanic countries.  Each World Cup campaign begins with the development of an integrated marketing plan that will maximize penetration within this core audience.

A critical early step in the campaign is seeding the Album into key markets via a combination of print media inserts, grassroots and retail integration.  For World Cup 2018 we helped distribute more than 3.5M promotional albums – a significant planning and logistical undertaking.

We spearheaded the execution of a targeted Hispanic media campaign that included the development, negotiation, and placement of television, radio, print, and digital assets.  Influencer marketing activities have evolved aggressively over the years with the emergence of social media and played a significant role in the success of the World Cup 2018 campaign.



  • There’s only one Fernando Fiore. The larger than life media personality is an outspoken fan of Panini and the perfect celebrity to connect the brand with both Hispanic and General market consumers.  A full production day with Fernando led to the creation of a suite of digital assets that included short-form video teases, stunt appearances in a business suit made from Panini stickers, and promotional tags.

  • Given the soccer endemic nature of Panini, media partnerships are centered around creative integrations that provide talent with the opportunity to touch, feel, trade, and utilize Panini products. Media activities in 2018 spanned multiple Hispanic partners including official World Cup broadcaster, Telemundo. In collaboration with BeIN Sports we created an original bi-weekly Facebook live show “La Ultima Carta” that generated over 3 million impressions.

  • It’s not every day the supreme pontiff engages with a brand marketing campaign. But Panini is no ordinary product, and in collaboration with Telemundo, we were able to share the FIFA World Cup Album with soccer fan, Pope Francis. All told, we created and distributed over 300 custom MyPanini stickers to influential personalities generating millions of social media impressions.  Paid campaigns were also established with authentic soccer fans influencers on Instagram.

  • Over the years we have developed a close working relationship with key Panini sales distributors. A working dynamic that ensures our marketing and media plans are always fully aligned with the needs and activities of sales. The ultimate activation highlight for us is knowledge that Panini America has achieved expediential growth in sales with each passing World Cup collection.