New & Cool in World Cup Marketing

In 2014, record-breaking social media coverage of the World Cup led to a tournament final that racked up more than 280 million interactions. However, the 2018 final between France and Croatia drove just as many interactions on Facebook alone! Given the social fan fervor around the beloved event, marketers had to step up the game with innovative and exciting campaigns. Here are just a few of our favorites.

new and cool in world cup marketing

Coca-Cola: Virtual ambassador

This year’s Coca-Cola campaign featured its own virtual ambassador, Uplifted Alex – a fictitious soccer player from the video game FIFA 18. This one scores points (wink, wink) for capitalizing on a hugely popular video game, which launched in September 2017 for engagement in advance of the big event. It also grabs the older demographic, who may notice that the Alex commercial is reminiscent of a famous 1979 Coca-Cola commercial featuring a young fan consoling real football player Mean Joe Greene.

BBC: Embroidered animation

The BBC’s “operatic montage” of memorable moments from World Cup history is one of the most notable of many unique graphic marketing campaigns surrounding the tournament. The campaign was inspired by how the world once recorded history – created in two different tapestry projects. The first, a seven-foot wall hanging, will go on public display. The second is an epic montage of iconic moments from World Cup history called “The Tapestry,” created by stitching more than 600 individual embroideries together for the film.

IKEA: For fans and non-fans alike

 The furniture company designed share-worthy social ads that cater to those who are gung-ho about the game…and those who find it just ho-hum. IKEA’s “Delaktig” sofa has seats facing both forwards and backwards, so both fans and non-fans can share the space. And the “Vallentuna” sofa model has a seat where the person cheering the wrong team can be quarantined.

Ikea World Cup

FIFA: Visual stories

International soccer’s governing body showed us that despite this year’s big ad spend, the World Cup is all about personal connection. World Cup Visual Stories gave us coverage of teams, players and coaches, highlighted in vibrant visuals. The interactivity of each story is a goal kick!

Want marketing magic for a big event? Let Signal help you create exceptional materials for that conference, tradeshow or fundraiser.


John Gibson - Vice President Creative Services

By: John Gibson

Vice President Creative Services

As Vice President Creative Services, John oversees and manages all creative and production tasks – but he’s known for continuing to roll his sleeves up and design on a daily basis. Clients such as IQVIA, Blue Cross Blue Shield NC and the Ronald McDonald House recognize his talents in graphic design, concept development, corporate identity development, logo design, typography and video production. Born in Greensboro, N.C., John graduated from East Carolina University with a B.F.A. degree in graphic design.


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