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  • Posted by: Gil Bottari on Thursday, July 10 2014 04:27 PM | Comments (0)

    FIFA World Cup 2014 - Brazil

    The FIFA World Cup is undeniably one of the biggest sports events on the planet—and the proof is in the numbers. In 2010, the audience for the Cup was 3.2 billion in South Africa. The biggest brands, of course, have not missed the opportunity to use this desirable platform to gain visibility, drive brand value, and strengthen emotional connections. An official event sponsor since 1978, with a contract to continue through 2022, Coca-Cola is one brand that has maximized this opportunity, creating many memorable World Cup moments. 

    Capturing the global spirit of the World Cup 

    Coca-Cola embodies the FIFA World Cup spirit both locally and globally like no other brand. Its campaign for the World Cup in Brazil—the "Everybody’s Cup"—refers to Brazil’s notably hospitable style of receiving any and all with open arms.  

    Coca-Cola World Cup 2014 packaging

    Realizing the power of music, futbol, and audience participation to unite people around the world, Coca-Cola brings its World Cup campaigns to life through theme-specific product packaging and songs that celebrate the event. Building on the success of the brand’s 2010 FIFA World Cup campaign song, “Wavin’ Flag”—which became an international hit and the “Song of the Cup”—Coca-Cola released a new song for the 2014 Cup: “The World Is Ours.”

    Fusing pop vocals with samba rhythms, the carnival-inspired song introduces futbol fans worldwide to the signature sounds of the host nation, Brazil. Celebrating the way the Cup connects countries and cultures around the world, the video features hundreds of real futbol fans’ Instagram photos. 

    Creating an inclusive and participatory World Cup experience    

    Sponsoring an event of this scale calls for brand communication that both engages audiences who are already fans, and captivates new audiences to connect emotionally with the sport. 

    Unveiled ahead of the 2014 Cup’s opening match, Coca-Cola’s “The Happiness Flag” perfectly symbolizes the brand’s ability to create shared experiences that engage people across social, cultural, and geographical divides.

    Formed of 192 printed nylon fabric panels, more than 200,000 fan images were incorporated to create the large “photomosaic” flag. Taking the notion of unity even further, the flag was based on a design developed by artists from countries that have a historic rivalry in futbol, Brazil and Argentina. 

    Along similar lines, Coca-Cola’s moving campaign for Argentina’s futbol team goes far beyond rivalry between nations; it compares life to a football match that results in cheers. Juxtaposing universal human moments of joy and tenderness with images of passionate fans and players in action, the spot succeeds in highlighting the emotions that unite us all. 

    In another emotional “win,” Coca-Cola recreates a special World Cup moment in the life of Victor Dell 'Aquila from Argentina, an amateur soccer player and devoted fan who lost his arms when he was 12-years-old. An image of Victor standing next to the futbol legends at the heart of his story immortalizes the moment in “El abrazo del alma” (“Embrace of the soul”).

    Coca-Cola World Cup 2014

    Coca-Cola is at the top of its game as a global brand. By connecting emotionally on a specifically local level as well as on a massive global scale, it has successfully linked the universal desire to quench thirst to shared core values like family, friendship, fun and happiness.  

    In the spirit of The World Cup, from Brazil to Japan to Argentina—and everywhere in between—Coca-Cola translates emotionally to all. 

    Gil Bottari is a Senior Designer in Interbrand's São Paulo’s office.

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  • Posted by: Paula Camarão on Tuesday, July 8 2014 07:24 PM | Comments (0)

    "Once every four years the whole world lives in the same time zone." That's how ESPN described the FIFA World Cup's impact—the biggest sports event on Earth attracts (and manages to unite) more than three billion people from many cultures and walks of life. For that reason, the World Cup is an incredible opportunity for brands to gain exposure—and, more than ever, they're taking advantage of the captive audience. 

    In recent months, a flood of green and yellow product packaging—referencing Brazil, where the World Cup is being hosted—has appeared, in all categories. But does an association with a big sports event (or a celebrity player) in and of itself really help a brand? What is gained beyond visibility? Does the association yield a significant return? Does the association fit the brand? And, most importantly, will people remember the brand and the ad—or just the ad? For example, the memorable ad that featured Neymar and Messi competing on the field, images of Rio de Janeiro, happy people, and a smart phrase at the end: Was it a message from Gatorade? Adidas? Or was it McDonalds? 

    Sea of green and yellow packaging

    Being a sponsor, even if large amounts of money are invested, is not always enough to create value for brands. To take full advantage of the rich opportunities the World Cup offers to connect with consumers around the world, brands must keep two key assumptions in mind:

    1. Continue the story of your brand

    Itaú, one of biggest banks in Brazil and FIFA national supporter, is known for supporting initiatives that seek to "change the world."Applying this to its World Cup sponsorship, its traditional hashtag #issomudaomundo (#thischangestheworld) was adapted to #issomudaojogo (#thischangesthegame). Through its social media messaging, the brand communicates that fans, with their spirit and enthusiasm, can change the outcome of a match. Putting money behind that message, the bank sponsored a song to inspire the crowd—and it became a national hit.

    Coca-Cola accomplished a similar feat in 2010 with the song "Wavin' Flag" by Somali-Canadian artist, K'naan. Though it was originally written for Somalia and the aspirations of its people for freedom, the song did not become a global hit until it was chosen as Coca-Cola's promotional anthem for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Remixed to match the celebratory nature of the event, Coca-Cola integrated its jingle, well known from Coca-Cola commercials, into the mix, generating a direct association between the song and the brand. The song was not only a top ten hit on charts around the world, it also effectively captured the sense of global unity that prevails during the World Cup as well as the optimistic spirit Coca-Cola seeks to convey.

    In this instance, such meaningful sponsored activity, aligned with the brand's identity, makes it impossible to speak of the 2010 FIFA World Cup without thinking of the song "Wavin' Flag." Similarly, the hashtag "thischangesthegame" will long be associated with the 2014 Cup as well as the bank, Itaú. In these cases, the investment was strategic and well-executed—and has contributed to building brand value.

    2.  Create an emotional connection

    Among the brands vying for the spotlight at the World Cup, the ones that reap the most benefits from this amazing sponsorship opportunity are the brands that forge an authentic, meaningful emotional connection with consumers. Beats by Dre accomplished this with its five-minute-long World Cup commercial, "The Game Before The Game," which begins with Neymar and his father talking on FaceTime, then bounces around the world to different Beats-wearing soccer stars preparing for matches. Even though it was prohibited from appearing in the Cup, the commercial struck a chord and generated over 20 million views on YouTube. 

    Stories create connection—and connection benefits brands. The World Cup offers ample opportunity to move and inspire people, which is how brands can really stand out.  

    As Arnab Roy, director of futbol marketing at Coca-Cola, put it, “[Futbol] is easily the No. 1 global passion and the FIFA World Cup is the biggest sporting platform. It has been a proven asset within our system to drive brand love and brand value.”

    Paula Camarão is a Strategy Analyst at Interbrand São Paulo.

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  • Posted by: Interbrand on Friday, June 13 2014 04:00 PM | Comments (0)

    Interbrand Global CEO Jez Frampton was invited on CNN today to discuss the current marketing and branding efforts around the World Cup. Jez suggests that the successful sponsors will be the brands that show they care about Brazil as much as they care about football. Watch the interview above and connect with Jez on Twitter: @jezframpton 

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  • Posted by: Fernando Andreazi, Carolina Cernev, Adriano Alves on Wednesday, June 11 2014 12:08 PM | Comments (0)
    World Cup FIFA's pagode

    Pagode is a Brazilian party where samba is played, usually enjoyed by boleiros—what football players and enthusiasts are called in Brazil. FIFA likes the word too, and decided to include "pagode" in the list of terms registered for the World Cup 2014. Not surprisingly, the reaction was negative.

    For most Brazilians, the word should belong to the people, not to a global entity. Add to the mix all the protests that are taking place in the country and we have a great deal of apprehension regarding the legal action.

    On the other hand, the controversy over FIFA’s decision amounts to a misunderstanding: “pagode” is the name of the official typography or font used in the event.

    FIFA, also troubled by alleged corruption charges concerning the 2022 World Cup, clarified the matter by stating, “It is not our intention to prevent anyone from using the word 'pagode,' unless it is used to name a typography or if the word is used to associate a particular firm, commercial or ad to the World Cup.”

    Nonetheless, the word “pagode” belongs to FIFA until December 31, 2014. Likewise, all the Brazil 2014 host city names were also registered by the organization, along with about 200 other words including football terms like “fair play.”

    Another unfortunate coincidence involved its registration of the word “Natal.” While it is a hosting city name, “Natal” also means "Christmas" in Portuguese, so the reaction was, understandably, indignant: “Now they want to register our Christmas?”

    Undoubtedly, registering at INPI (the National Institute of Industrial Property) is essential. It legally secures a brand and protects organizations against plagiarism and other opportunistic actions. Yet, the process was mishandled by FIFA, to say the least.

    The organization could have been more clear and diplomatic from the start—especially because this year's World Cup has been a very delicate subject for Brazilians.

    The start of the World Cup is still a few days away, and, as far as we can see, the “pagode” is just beginning.

    —Fernando Andreazi, Carolina Cernev and Adriano Alves are part of the team covering the World Cup on the Interbrand São Paulo blog. For more on FIFA's woes, watch Interbrand Global CEO Jez Frampton on CNN, and don't miss Best Brazilian Brands 2013.

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  • Posted by: Robert Ausdenmoore on Wednesday, November 6 2013 05:54 PM | Comments (0)

    The Next Big Social Thing

    Where there might have been some philosophical consensus on the merits of big data, opinions on best social media best practices were at times more divided at Advertising Age’s 2013 Digital Conference and CMO Strategy Summit. Overwhelmingly, marketers understand the critical role that social interactions with their customers will hold going forward, but many are trying to get out ahead of the curve of “what’s next?”

    Visa CMO Kevin Burke commented that versus the year 2000, the average person is consuming 75 hours of media a week, 67 percent of which is consumed digitally. The proliferation of mobile devices and online reviews has forced transparency that will, according to Burke, “raze the ivory tower of the brand.” While the need for a robust digital and social strategy is increasingly apparent, there are some real practical considerations that are shaping what tactics marketers are deploying.

    Lucas Herscovici, VP of Digital Marketing for Anheuser-Bush explained AB’s three part strategy on determining social channels to leverage: Observe, Experiment and Scale. “Observe” platforms are new social channels that AB actively monitors but doesn’t currently market in for legal or propriety reasons such as an overwhelmingly below-21 user base. “Experiment” channels like the fast-growing Vine or Instagram apps are obvious fits in terms of their media capabilities, but perhaps emerging in size. The “Scale” platforms (like Facebook or Twitter) are critical marketing channels in terms of members and opportunity for impressions.

    Looking across all three buckets of social channels, AB has ensured they can remain relevant on what is emerging, what is current, and are now conventional “must-have” social channels to utilize.

    Ben Huh, Founder and CEO of Internet culture network Cheezburger had similar recommendations in considering what channels could be appropriate marketing vehicles. He encouraged marketers to carefully consider the role of “native format” media, and how applications feel, and function seamlessly across mobile and PC channels. Rather than focusing on capabilities of any one given social channel, content should be generated in a format that is able to be consumed and shared across the largest number of devices.

    In spite of their relative simplicity, Internet “meme” images are so prevalent because of how instantly they can be consumed, regardless of where they are viewed. Huh’s perspective was largely captured in what he calls “The Kitten Test.” Within the context of the Internet, whatever marketing message you create needs to be able to hold interest as well as a picture of a kitten, because that is largely the type of media you are competing with.

    Relevance in Real-Time

    A specific tactic marketers are utilizing within their social channels is the so-called “real-time” approach of entering themselves into online conversations. A gold standard example that was used across several presentations was the “Oreo: Dunk in the Dark” tweet that ran during the blackout of the last Super Bowl. Other examples included the royal baby birth and recent iPhone release.

    Neil Bedwell, Coca-Cola's Group Director for Digital Content and Strategy, is working carefully to apply some of these real-time principles to the upcoming World Cup in Brazil. Despite its acclaim, he opined that the Oreo example also started a trend of horrible real-time marketing imitations from brands that haven’t appropriately mastered “when to speak and when not to speak.”

    Twitter noticed this trend and developed an Amplify platform that allows brands to work together to live in the moment. An example was ESPN sharing Instant Replays of college football plays within Twitter, complete with a brief Ford Fusion pre-roll that was promoted to non-followers who otherwise fell within Ford’s segmentation. The highlights and associated ads were viewed over 7 million times.

    Like Bedwell, Kevin Weil, Twitter’s VP Product for Revenue, suggested that the key to this sort of real-time success is authenticity, but that its benefits are obvious when a good fit is uncovered. Twitter has determined that interacting with a promoted tweet has resulted in an average 12% sales list among exposed audiences.

    Robert Ausdenmoore is Manager, Client Development, for Interbrand Design Forum.

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