What the World Cup can teach us about advertising. - HenkinSchultz Skip to main content

What the World Cup can teach us about advertising.

World Cup 2018

On the evening of October 11, 2017 many of us sat and watched friends sulk in dismay as the realization set in that we would not be able to cheer for our Team USA in the World Cup.

There are some who thoroughly enjoy watching soccer, and some who are just along for a friendly beer and ask at least 10-questions-per half.

I don’t know much about soccer, but after moving to Sioux Falls I have learned that many residents eat, sleep and breathe this sport.

Molly KreutzfeldtGraphic Designer

USA’s defeat and what it meant to fans & advertisers

You may not have been moved to tears by the USA being eliminated, but for some it was a BIG deal, especially those who owned businesses that thrived by the crowds brought in by the World Cup. It kind of made you wonder, what will this do for advertising? Will people still come out and watch? Will this loss mean they totally bow out without being able to cheer for the “home” team?

Fans of soccer are known for their passion for the sport, and apparently, doesn’t matter what team is playing! The world’s most-watched sporting event kicked off in Russia last week, already full of upsets, surprisingly high TV ratings, and some incredible ads!

Over the course of the 30 days of World Cup, you will more than likely find friends, coworkers, and probably even your very own self, pledging your fútbol allegiance to a different country. Soccer matches aren’t crammed with TV commercials like the NBA or the NFL, but that hasn’t stopped advertisers from rising up to some classic campaigns with some interesting approaches.

The two commercials that caught our eye –

This Bud’s for You…and you and you and you.

Even American companies like Budweiser didn’t miss out on a chance to advertise during the most watched sporting event in the world. Their beer-carrying drone travels out of St. Louis to make it to Russia just in time for the World Cup. (Also, where can you get one of those? Asking for a friend.)

Jumping on the “Wagen”

Brands like Volkswagen have capitalized on USA falling out of the World Cup, with two of our favorite commercials (see below). This is exactly what US fans have done: strapped in and shamelessly jumped on a band wagon without missing a single game.

Red Carded Ads

If you are on social media these days, you can’t scroll through a feed without a couple relatives in a heated political argument. Sometimes edgy can be fun, but the odds of attempting edgy and not offending someone on this planet are slim to none.

Despite the ads being viewed by people all around the globe, not all campaigns are playing it safe. For example, Burger King’s tainted humor, encouraging Russian women to be impregnated by soccer players, was quickly given a red card and was removed immediately. To show your brand’s fun personality, we recommend you find a happy medium. Find a way to stand out from the competition without demoralizing your values and having to issue apologies post-release.

So, what does the World Cup teach us about advertising?

It’s not enough to have an advertising presence when you have a captive audience. You must engage their passion in some way. The best television ads do just that. They still sell product, but they meet you where you are – half-field, sideline, or sports bar.

No matter what your industry, these helpful tips can be applied to your commercial or advertisement. Reach out to HenkinSchultz today for how we can help produce a trophy-winning campaign for you!

You can also view some of our favorite commercials that we have done for our clients here:

See more of our video advertisements and commercials on our Youtube channel. Read more of our television blogs here.