The World Cup Sucks (Sorry very late)

At marketing that is..

To start off, I watched the world cup. Well 2 or 3 games, but I sort of liked them; the shootout was good. But basically I want to talk about the world cup teaching us how not to market.

**discalaimer – I know, the World Cup is the biggest sporting event worldwide. If you happen to be in the global market with a 15 digit market cap, entrenched at the top of three billion peoples conciousness – stop reading now.

Now that we are alone.

**disclaimer 2 – Sure, the world cup was awesome you watched 30 of the games. Are you going to be talking about it next year, let alone, when NFL training camp starts? That’s what I thought. Which brings me to the first point of

How not to Market – Soccer Style

1.Sporadic activity with long breaks – and I’m not just talking about the game play itself, I’m talking about the actual world cup. Whatever reason there is behind playing every 4  years this schedule is irrelavent in today’s world. It doesn’t dilute the value of the championship.

Think about the best bands with loyal fans that have really built a brand. They are the ones that come to your city every summer, build a fan base, release new albums regularly. What if Ford only changed their models every 4 years? Where would they be? Well bad example.

2.Very little objective measures – A 90+ minute event with 1 or2 goals. How long can you talk about that amazing shot that just went wide? Sure baseball is long and boring (and ratings are falling) but it least it has stats. A million of them.

Products need statistics. You don’t sell a computer by saying that it is fast on the internet, you say the size of the processor, the amount of storage, the programs it runs.

3.Uncool sounding names – there is nothing that the sport can do here. You should know your audience. Use the correct verbaige and the correct medium.
4.Fake it – I know its just gamesmanship, but the stretcher theatrics are ridiculous. How did this start? Get up and join the play.

Is there really any difference from the guy jumping off the stretcher running back in the game and Verizon customer service telling me they will try and help. If you don’t truly want to make your customers happy, if they are just revenue, you have to hire someone that does really care. EVERY customer is smarter, more cynical and talks to more people than has been the case in the past. And they are talking more about you good and bad. It will catch up to you.

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1 Response to The World Cup Sucks (Sorry very late)

  1. Steve George says:

    I’m not sure if you’re joking or being serious in this post. So sorry in advance if I offend.

    The reason I’m not sure if you’re joking is point 2 and point 3. For most native soccer watchers these ideas sound crazy i.e if your European and soccer is your main sport. In fact Budweizer advertises on UK TV in front of soccer matches by running some humour ads where an American commentator suggests ‘silly’ things – they actually suggest renaming boring teams like Manchester United to the Manchester Pirates. The punchline being that Bud doesn’t know anything about football but they do know about beer.

    As you call football soccer I assume you’re from the US. So you might not be aware that when the World Cup was held in the US one idea put forward was to make the goals bigger. Test audiences in the US identified the lack of goals compared to American football as being a problem. For a seasoned soccer watcher that goals are actually only a minor aspect, it’s the build-up and the play. So by comparison when I watch American football I can’t work out a shotgun from a sack.

    I guesss that how this applies to marketing is that cultural issues and perspectives have a massive impact on how you relate to your audience. Or perhaps, it shows that when brands try to move outside their traditional served market they risk not relating to their new prospect and offending their existing clients.

    Oh and the reason why there isn’t a World Cup every year is because two years in between is a regional cup – European Championship Cup, and African Nations. As all cups are played during the closed season for the regular leagues the impact on players is they don’t get any holiday. So for example Reyna and McBride would have been playing from pre-season the previous July all the way through, on average 1 game a week – top team s players probably average 2 games a weeks as they have cups and other special games.

    ps agree the whole stretcher thing is crazy! 🙂

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