2018 FIFA World Cup: The 6 Best Campaigns

June 18, 2018 Melissa Ledesma

It’s back. And last time, it captivated more audiences than the Super Bowl, Academy Awards and the Olympics.

In 2014, the FIFA World Cup raked in more than 3.2 billion viewers, breaking numerous TV records in international markets. Dentsu Aegis predicts stronger figures for 2018, with 3.6% growth to $589.5 billion due to worldwide sporting events, one of which being the FIFA World Cup.

Big brands included this year’s World Cup in their marketing strategy to reach their target audiences. Take a look at the best five campaigns, and maybe you’ll be inspired for the 2019 Women’s World Cup!

6. Budweiser: #LightUpTheFIFAWorldCup

Combining beer and technology, Budweiser released a TV spot featuring drones uniting FIFA fans by delivering drinks to cities across the globe. From the USA to Nigeria and Russia, drones #LightUpTheFIFAWorldCup with Budweiser and their Red Light Cups. These noise-activated cups light up to encourage excitement and can be purchased at official 2018 FIFA World Cup stadiums and viewing parties across the world. With over 1 million views on YouTube alone, this Budweiser campaign has already raked in views and expanded the brand’s potential consumer base. Budweiser has been a sponsor of the FIFA World Cup for more than 25 years.

5. Hyundai: Three Little Birds

In a three minute TV spot, Hyundai partnered with well-known pop band Maroon 5 recreate “Three Little Birds,” an original Bob Marley song. A proud 2018 FIFA World Cup partner, Hyundai also supplied 530 vehicles for the games to aid logistical operations like transporting teams, referees and more. Leveraging their interest in and support of the 2018 World Cup, Hyundai was able to reach and engage their audience.

4. New Balance: Always Attacking. Meet Furon and Tekela.

New Balance knows not to exhaust their resources in an effort to compete with Adidas or Nike. Instead, New Balance released a hyper-focused 40-second marketing video, displaying their newest cleats, which are “built for the biggest of stages,” like the FIFA World Cup arena. With sleek looks, these sneakers are portrayed as being at the forefront of technology with “decisive accuracy” and “game changing agility.” New Balance also manufactured the Panama team jerseys, proving their brand is part of the world of soccer and the FIFA World Cup.

3. Volkswagen: Jump on the Wagen

Volkswagen thinks if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. The U.S. didn’t make it to the 2018 FIFA World Cup, but VW knows Americans will still watch, which poses the question, how do you appeal to U.S. consumers when they have no one to root for? Volkswagen encourages them to #JumpOnTheWagen. In this campaign, teams from Switzerland, Brazil, Iceland and more ask Americans to root for their teams from inside Volkswagen cars, showcasing their versatility.

2. Adidas: Create the Answer

Adidas launched their #HereToCreate campaign in 2018 and repurposed their content for the World Cup. With a 90-second, fast-paced TV spot, Adidas featured more than 56 different athletes, influencers and performers like Pharrell Williams, David Beckham and more. In this quick ad, Adidas focused on a social movement that unites consumers globally. The answer to a world divided, Adidas revealed, is creativity. Whether its soccer, comedy, acting or something else, World Cup fans are encouraged to be themselves and create with the support of Adidas.

1. Coca-Cola: Be Ready

Coca-Cola, official partner of 2018 FIFA World Cup, crafted a creative initiative that is airing for more than 200 counties throughout the World Cup Games. With the message “Be Ready” powering the campaign, the brand produced four different videos, one specifically for the FIFA World Cup video game from EA Sports. Coca-Cola, one of the biggest spenders in World Cup advertising, enlisted the help of artist Jason Derulo to produce the official song for the FIFA World Cup and star in their TV spots. The video featured below, “Ready For,” preps newly manufactured Coke bottles and cans for the life they have ahead: hydrating the fans of the FIFA World Cup. Plus, Coca-Cola released limited edition cans, pictured above, so fans can predict scores on social media.

Honorable Mention: Nike: For Brazil

Nike, Adidas’ top competitor, released a 90-second spot for the 2018 World Cup that was focused on riling up team spirit and using Nike products to win the game. During the 2014 games, Nike’s marketing jumped 36% to $876 million to promote the brand during the World Cup. The brand is known for their rivalry with Adidas during the FIFA World Cup.

You don’t have to be an official partner with a supersized budget to engage consumers during the FIFA World Cup. And it’s not too late! Your brand can tap into the World Cup marketing through marketing and social media.


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About the Author

Melissa Ledesma

An innovative problem solver by nature, Melissa Ledesma is both experienced and passionate about the digital marketing industry. She has held a number of high-level positions within the real estate, mortgage, entertainment and digital advertising industries, including Director of PR and Business Development at NJ Lenders Corp. and Director of Communications & Government Affairs at Eastern Bergen County Board of Realtors. As Director of Content & Communications at Digital Media Solutions (DMS), Melissa demonstrates a strategic, creative and tactical approach when handling the thought leadership programs and marketing and communications efforts for DMS and its family of brands. She manages all conferences, sponsorships and event execution and plays a pivotal role in the creation of written, digital and video content for all campaigns. Melissa has consistently positioned the team at DMS as experts in performance marketing across multiple industries.

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