The FIFA Women’s World Cup is into the semi-finals and interest is blossoming. FOX has done a fantastic job presenting the matches, capturing the surrounding stories, and showcasing the player personalities. Even up against the Stanley Cup and a star-studded NBA Finals, TV ratings and social engagement for the U.S. Women’s Team was strong throughout the Group matches, and numbers have continued to grow since.
We’ve certainly been enjoying the action on the field, but as soccer marketers we’ve also be engrossed in the marketing action surrounding the tournament. Here’s a look a three brands we think are executing standout campaigns.
Nationwide isn’t playing around. The Insurance company – who is neither a FIFA nor U.S. Soccer partner – signed the star power of Alex Morgan and have boldly built a campaign around this summer’s women’s soccer spectacle. Morgan is at the heart of the campaign and featured in TV creative and digital platforms. As a major advertiser on FOX, Nationwide has a heavy commercial schedule, in addition to sponsorship of the pre-game show and match lineups. It’s #BandTogether campaign provides fans the chance to win signed Alex Morgan gear. Morgan’s signature pink headbands might not have gone total mainstream, but Nationwide is most definitely (unofficially) on your side.
2. Scotts Lawn Care
A World Cup wouldn’t be a World Cup without clever guerrilla marketing campaigns. The opportunity for Scotts Lawn Care to leverage media attention around the event was almost to perfect when the decision was made to host the World Cup in Canada on all artificial fields. A group of women’s players, led by U.S. legend Abby Wambach, filed a lawsuit against FIFA in and attempt to force the installation of grass. The lawsuit was ultimately withdrawn, but the stage was set for a social activism campaign.
Scott’s saw their opportunity and pounced; offering to pay for the installation of real grass in each of the stadiums. Once FIFA said no, they had their platform from which Wambach would speak. Scott’s #KeepItReal campaign promotes the benefits of grass fields and highlights the “shortcomings” of artificial fields. Not surpassingly, the campaign has gathered the support of fellow professional players (both women and men), media observers, and influential fans on social media. As of June 30rd, almost 6.2 million* had been generated for #KeepItReal.
Probably the most integrated marketing campaign is being executed by the folks at Mondelez. Mondelez brands (Ritz, Trident, Chips Ahoy) are the Official Snacks of U.S. Soccer and their #PassTheLove campaign is firing on multiple fronts with digital, social, nationwide experiential, as well as the all important retail integration. As part of their Shopper activity, Mondelez is executing one of the first holographic ad placements in grocery stores across the country in support of the campaign. #PassTheLove gives fans the opportunity to share messages of support for the U.S. Team that will appear on a digital wall. Social promotional support by FOX has helped the campaign generate 6.9 million impressions as of June 30rd* Entry also gives fans the chance to win various sweepstakes prizes.