Coca-Cola's Longest Celebration, Budweiser's BudUnited, and other initiatives tap social networks to win over fans of the soccer tournament.
Showcase a video of Cameroon soccer player Roger Milla's famous wiggle dance from the 1990 World Cup. Add the inspirational song, "Wavin Flag," sung by Somali-Canadian artist K'naan.
Capitalize on the excitement over the World Cup, asking soccer fans to join the "Longest Celebration" and upload a video or image showing their version of a "celebratory corner flag dance." And toss in a chance to win prizes, including tickets to the FIFA 2010 Football World Cup, and you've got the foundation for Coca-Cola's World Cup promotional campaign.
Like other brands looking to capture the attention of soccer fans during the world's most popular sporting event, Coca-Cola has turned to YouTube to host this lively campaign, coupled with rich media ads on the YouTube homepage, a Facebook presence, and TV spots during U.K. match broadcasts urging users to take part.
Not to be outdone, Budweiser last week launched an online only reality TV series hosted entirely on YouTube. It features 32 housemates and football fans from around the world living together in South Africa for the duration of the tournament. Activity on other social networks, and ads across YouTube and a range of traditional media are driving traffic directly to the channel, dubbed Bud United.
New video content is uploaded every day, capturing the fans' passion for the game and the emerging rivalries between them as the tournament progresses. Housemates watch matches alongside their opposing fans, creating tensions, but also intriguing alliances among various personalities elected to represent each of the 32 national teams involved. Users are also invited to help dictate events in the house by taking part in daily polls on the channel homepage.
Alongside CPG companies, sports brands are also extremely active on YouTube with major players such as Nike and Adidas posting exclusive content on their respective channels prior to and during the competition, with some reaching an audience of millions. Since it was uploaded less than four weeks ago Nike's three minute Write the Future commercial has amassed over 15 million views. A 10-minute behind-the-scenes video is also available on the Nike Facebook page, but only to members who agree to "Like" the brand first.
Elsewhere, Puma is preparing to launch its own Twitter-based campaign today called Puma #Lovecup. From today until the end of the tournament, users will be encouraged to tweet hashtags relating to their favorite team in an attempt to establish which is "the most loved team in the world." The team with the most hashtag use will be crowned champion on July 12, coinciding with the World Cup final itself.
Potato snack brand Pringles has also launched an augmented reality application on its Facebook page titled, Dance to Victory. The app allows users to watch their favorite players dance across their desktop with the help of webcam technology.
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Jack Marshall was a staff writer and stats editor for ClickZ News from 2007 until August 2011.
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