Which brands are winning the World Cup? - This year's hits and misses

(3 min read)

This year’s World Cup is full of upsets, surprises, hits and misses. The World Cup curse sent Germany packing and their fans wailing with devastation, literally.

Portugal and Argentina left shortly after on the first flight out of Zhukovsky Airport on the outskirts of Moscow, Russia. The 2018 FIFA World Cup is being called one of the most unpredictable World Cups to date. With all the drama, buzz and hilarity surrounding the beautiful game, brands are scrambling to join the banter.

The World Cup to Jamaican marketers is equivalent to the Superbowl in the US. In 2018, companies spent up to $5 million US dollars for a 30-second commercial slot during the Superbowl. Money well spent when you’re getting an average of 103.4 million eyeballs watching your commercial.

More people are tuned into their TVs, radios and phones during the World Cup than almost every other time of the year. The visibility has competitive advertising agencies, marketing firms and in-house marketing departments laser-focused on their chance to get the biggest share of the attention. It takes a killer marketing strategy to market your product while Belgium is scoring the winning goal against Japan in the 94th minute with 5 seconds left before the referee blows his whistle for a penalty shootout.

Here are some of our big winners who still managed to get it right under the pressure:

Grace Foods - Influencer Marketing

Grace revealed popular dancehall artiste Ding Dong Ravers as a Global Brand Ambassador on June 28 for their “Flava With a Beat” campaign. Nine days earlier Grace dropped a huge bomb with their “Flairy Makerel” ad on June 21. Why did it work? Grace tapped into influencer marketing, using a popular mover and shaker in dancehall with a clean image to represent a humble meal that’s a proud part of Jamaican #RunABoat culture. @dingdongravers (345k IG followers) and fans all over the country loved it!

National Bakery - User Generated Content

“National Bakery FC" is a running joke among Jamaicans about the Croatian national team jersey and the uncanny resemblance to the the National Bakery Giant Bread. The company showed impeccable social listening skills, picked up on content that already existed about their brand and capitalized on it with a great level of finesse.

876Water - Influencer Marketing

The brand is on our list because it filled the void that FIFA left by not giving it’s fans a catchy song for this year’s world cup. 876Water called in one of the kings of catchy songs, @chichingchingja (221k IG followers) and popular DJs @creepchromatic (74.6k IG followers) and @jrchromatic (26.1k IG followers) to make their own World Cup song for a commercial that captured all the excitement we were missing.

Jamaica National - Social Media Management

The most successful companies and brands on social media are often the wittiest and funniest brands. Especially on a platform like Twitter where the attention span is the shortest, it takes a great sense of humor and even better timing to get the most engagement. Jamaica national showed competitors that they know when and how to join the banter.

This World Cup had hits but it definitely had some misses. Here are some of the brands that missed the mark:

ATL (Appliance Traders Limited)

ATL’s a/c commercial using the beeping sound of the a/c unit to make a fun beat was a summer hit. Until you realize that it requires the audience to know what the beeping of an a/c sounds like. It seems that ATL left out a large portion of its audience with that commercial.

KFC

Don’t get us wrong, the commercial was great, but it fell short because it was predictable. The World Cup has too many memorable moments for a brand to bring us something we already expected. Chris Martin’s “Big Deal” will always be a memorable KFC moment but there was a bigger opportunity here to take risks.

Eyeland Eyewear

In an attempt to match the theme and energy of the World Cup, Eyeland Eyewear lost sight of what was important, it's brand personality. The cheeky nature of the commercial was more fitting for an energy drink than an eyewear brand.

Honorable mention to Prime Minister Hon. Andrew Holness and Miss Jamaica Universe 2010 Yendi Phillips (@yendizzle 308k followers) or being influencers with the most relevant posts about the World Cup.

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