MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Sports has never just been about the game itself. Anyone who has screamed and cheered with fellow fans, whether live or crowded around a bar or living room screen, knows that it’s more than just finding the sport entertaining. It’s about the bigger world surrounding sports too, a culture that’s rich in community, superstitions, traditions, and the beautiful connection each fan feels with their team.
This is especially true for huge tournaments like this year’s Rugby World Cup and the ICC Cricket World Cup. With the hype these massive events are generating, it’s clear why brands are tapping into — getting creative with — that dynamic culture of sports and fandom. Here are some of adobo Magazine’s favorite World Cup campaigns from the past week:
In this Mondolez India ad by Ogilvy, cricket is the catalyst for the bond between two diehard fans. So, when one of them scores tickets to watch the World Cup live, he makes sure no one gets left behind. This film is part of Mondolez’ World Cup campaign which highlights how vital community is in sports by giving fans a chance to score free tickets to sit among fellow devotees with every purchase of Cadbury.
Meta’s campaign for the Rugby World Cup is a reminder of how much technology has enriched the act of fostering and keeping in touch with the community. Told through a series of reels, the film introduced Meta’s new team-specific Superfan characters. The spot, filmed in first-person POVs from different fans, showed that the sports fandom experience is the best when shared and celebrated with others, may they be right next to you or on the other side of the screen.
Saying your team is going to win, preparing celebratory signs, and scheduling your return flight on the day after the final. All of these have one thing in common, and according to Guinness‘ hilarious ad by AMV BBDO, it’s the worst thing you can do: jinxing your team. So, this year, fans are keeping their predictions to themselves and putting up signs and wearing shirts proclaiming that they’re happy to just be participating. After all, just because you think it, doesn’t mean you have to jinx it.
This year’s ads don’t just focus on the joys of sports culture; some of them also raise awareness of the darker sides of it. Drinking, for example, is a huge part of watching your favorite team win or lose. While that in itself is fine, the fact that many worry about how to get home afterward and sometimes just opt to drive under the influence themselves is a huge problem. Through intimate shots of a night out ending and questions being left unanswered by an inebriated friend, Victimes & Citoyens association and creative agency joga addressed this in its road safety PSA for the Rugby World Cup.
Every sports team has a fandom that you can divide into two groups — believers and doubters. These two often challenge each other in a face-off of opinions and ideas about their beloved team. However, Thums Up, in its new spot by Ogilvy, shines a light on the beauty of this phenomenon: regardless of the odds, the culture of rallying together and hyping each other up in sports always leads to the believer in everybody winning.