By Barry Janoff
April 2, 2014: Coca-Cola, an official global marketing partner of FIFA, is ramping up activation behind the 2014 World Cup with what the beverage maker called "the largest marketing program in the history of The Coca-Cola Company."
Coke said it would invite the world to "celebrate football as a force for social good" via its “The World’s Cup” campaign, which encompasses TV, print, radio, iTunes, out-of-home, POP, Internet, social media and an extensive element that will create "unrivalled access, participation, empowerment and conversation" among fans and consumers.
The campaign comes as rival Pepsi, which is not an official FIFA partner, continues to push its own worldwide World Cup agenda led by such soccer stars as Lionel Messi, Robin van Persie, David Luiz, Sergio Ramos, Sergio Agüero and Jack Wilshere.
The Coca-Cola effort is anchored by a TV spot, "One World, One Game: Everyone's Invited," that launched today (April 2). It follows the story of four local soccer teams from around the world that have "overcome life’s challenges through their love of the game." The reward for their perseverance is a trip to Brazil to watch the World Cup in person this June-July, thanks to Coke.
Lead agency is Wieden + Kennedy Sao Paulo, Brazil.
“Just as Brazil is everyone’s country and Coca-Cola is everyone’s drink, the FIFA World Cup is everyone’s cup,” Joseph Tripodi, evp and chief marketing and commercial officer for Coca-Cola, said in a statement. “Through 'The World’s Cup', Coca-Cola wants to celebrate real people playing football, demonstrating how the game is a force for a more inclusive and connected world.”
The online extended version of the commercial allows visitors to connect with a dedicated destination where they can submit photos and tweets. Coke said submissions would be compiled into "The Happiness Flag . . . the largest flag mosaic ever created," which the company plans to unfurl on the field prior to the opening match of the FIFA World Cup in Sao Paulo on June 12. (See the full spot here.)
On-site, Coca-Cola said it would have advertising in and around every FIFA World Cup venue, continuing a strategy the company said began in 1950.
The multi-layered global campaign also includes “Where Will Happiness Strike Next” documentary-style short films shot during the FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola. It will feature stories of "passionate football fans [who] are using the game to help them triumph over adversity, in turn inspiring others to use the power of football to overcome difficulties."
Coca-Cola said it has had a "long-standing relationship with FIFA since 1974" and has been an official sponsor of the FIFA World Cup since 1978.
According to Tripodi, “Coca-Cola prides itself on celebrating the power of football and the ability of the sport to bring the world together. Football is for everyone, regardless of geographical and social boundaries. That’s why this year we are launching 'The World’s Cup'."
“Coca-Cola prides itself on celebrating the power of football and the ability of the sport to bring the world together. Football is for everyone."
On the same day that Coke unveiled "The World's Cup" commercial and support, Pepsi released a two-minute spot, "Now Is What You Make It," which follows a young fan named Stony making his way through the streets of Rio de Janeiro en route to a World Cup match, encountering Messi and the other Pepsi soccer spokesman along the way. (See the full spot here.)
It plays out to a cover version of David Bowie's "Heroes" as performed by multi-Grammy winning artist Janelle Monáe. The online version enables visitors to link to additional interactive content and also allows them to create their own experience. (Details here.)
In addition to Coca-Cola, FIFA global marketing partners include adidas, Hyundia-Kia Motors, Emirates, Sony and Visa. FIFA World Cup sponsors include Anhueser-Busch (Budweiser), Castrol, Continental, Johnson & Johnson, McDonald's, Moy Park, OI and Yingli.
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