Top 9 UK Brands in World Cup Marketing 2014

The World Cup has finally arrived! We’ve been waiting for 4 years for this moment, and marketers and advertisers are jumping on the opportunity to launch some great World Cup Marketing campaigns and get people talking! We’ve put a list together of our favorite World Cup marketing campaigns, so far…

World Cup Marketing: Paddy Power

Paddy Power – an online betting site – never fails to deliver, and this world cup campaign is one of their best ever. Their first campaign of the World Cup was of a picture of the Brazilian rain forest that had been deforested to write “C’mon England- PP.” Everyone thought it was real, and social media blew up with criticism of Paddy Power for doing such a disgraceful thing. After all the attention was on Paddy Power, they told the public it was a PR stunt – and a great one at that.

We all know about the loss on Saturday the 14th of June: England lost to Italy. Paddy Power managed to come out with another fantastic campaign that included a man locked in a cage because he had been a traitor and bet on Italy to win.  This is a great example of a brand riding the coattails of huge local news.

World Cup Marketing: Adidas

Adidas, not surprisingly, is one of the main sponsors of the World Cup.  They started their marketing before the actual World Cup, during the final of the Champions League: Real Madrid Vs Atletico Madrid. They have also taken over 32 buses, one each for the 32 countries playing in the World Cup. The iconic route master buses have been painted over in black with various different quotes and players on them, such as “all in or nothing,” and “hunt or be hunted.”  What’s not to love about these wonderful vehicles driving around town promoting Adidas and the World Cup?

World Cup Marketing: Currys & PC World

This advert talks for itself: what better way of convincing your better half than telling them this 40 inch TV would be great for watching her favourite TV show… just in time for the World Cup…

World Cup Marketing: Betfair

You may or may not have heard about the giant octopus that broke down on London’s busiest high street, Oxford Circus. If it wasn’t intended to be a PR stunt from UK Bookmakers, Betfair, it managed it inadvertently:  a giant octopus resembling the Paul the prediction octopus from the previous World Cup isn’t going to go unnoticed, even in London. Betfair shortly after tweeted their apologies about the octopus in the middle of the road, and by this point everyone was fixated by what had happened. The question is: was the truck REALLY meant to break down on London’s busiest street?

World Cup Marketing: Coca-Cola

As one of the biggest brands in the world (with one of the biggest marketing budgets), Coca-Cola is bound to earn mention among the best World Cup marketing campaigns – particularly seeing as how they’re one of FIFA’s partners in the event.  Prior to the World Cup starting, Coca Cola completed a global tour with the actual World Cup itself (no news on whether anyone drank Coke out of it), and gave the public the ability to track the next sighting on the FIFA website.  Not only that, Coca-Cola sponsored one of Brazil’s best-known street artists to design the new drink cans for the duration of the World Cup.

World Cup Marketing: McDonald’s

McDonald’s is also a major sponsor of the World Cup, and launched a video advertising campaign showing incredible amateur footballer tricks:

McDonald’s also launched their own Fantasy World Cup league on the FIFA website. This allows for users to customise their perfect teams with the players within the World Cup. You are able to strategise, buy and sell players and hopefully, score points. We say #mcwin.

World Cup Marketing: Nike

Sporting heroes Nike have created a fantastic piece of animation advertising. Named “The Last Game,” its theme is centered on our favourite footballers (such as Ronaldo and Rooney). All the players have been cloned and reveal a dystopian society of man vs “clone” and the ad is the story line behind how the best players have been kicked out of the football league. All the players are now working different jobs, from hairdresser to a fisherman, and when they come together to try and save football as they’re not afraid to take risks. At the end, the REAL players challenge the clones to a match..  “There’s no greater danger than playing it safe.”

You can watch what happens next…

Best World Cup Campaigns: Budweiser

Budweiser created their own application for IOS devices that allows you to take a picture and paint your face with your chosen flag.

Meltwater’s insights?

We’re big fans of Social Listening, and we believe that by analyzing social conversations we can share insights into nearly any subject. Using Social Media Marketing software Meltwater Buzz, the most talked about teams in association with the word “win” are Germany and Brazil. For them to go head-to-head in the 2014 final would mean for Germany to come second out of their group. The countries with the most mentions on social media about the World Cup are the US followed by UK and Indonesia. You can read more about our data and insights in a recent article published on The Drum.

Content Marketing = Art + Science: INFOGRAPHIC

Content Marketing is a fairly new term on the marketing front, and one that causes my Mom to scratch her head when I try to explain what I do for a living.  My normal elevator pitch is: “Content marketing is the combination of digital marketing and creative – we’re producing creative content with a solidly articulated business goal, strategy and KPI’s behind it.”

This didn’t make too much sense to my mom, really, but anyone who’s been in digital marketing for awhile seems to understand that explanation.  A picture is worth 1000 words, however, so when we ran across this content marketing infographic, I figured it was worth a share (and yes, I’ll send it to my Mom too).  This infographic is actually a great example of good content marketing (here’s more on how to put together a great infographic), put together by a company that makes content marketing management software.

the best content marketing merges art and science


I will note here that I saw Adam Savage of “Mythbusters” fame give a talk called “Enlightened Views on Art & Science” at SXSW earlier this year, and his talk focused specifically on the art in science and the science in art.  That being the case, it would seem that he’s uniquely suited to a job in content marketing if that whole Mythbusters thing doesn’t work out…

Social Media Monitoring For Small Business: 5 Ways to Get the Most out of Your Tools

Social media monitoring for small business is especially powerful, as one good social listening tool can be used to service multiple purposes in your organization.

Social media monitoring tools run the gamut from free to paid, but they follow the same adage as most things in this world: you get what you pay for.

That being the case, I’ve seen a lot of discussions on LinkedIn Groups and the like wherein people debate whether or not paid social listening tools for small business are worth the spend.

Having spent a good chunk of my career helping SMB’s and nonprofits with their marketing plans, I’ll voice what may be a counterintuitive opinion here:

A lot of the confusion around social media monitoring lies in the misapprehension that, because social media monitoring tools monitor social media sites specifically, these are tools that should be used for social media marketing specifically – and social media marketing is still a murky discipline for a lot of us, often without well-articulated business goals that make finding the social media ROI a bit like a treasure hunt without a map.

Social listening is essentially a social search: good social media monitoring tools are harnessing Big Data (which is a problem, not a solution) to cut through the noise of gozillions of conversations happening simultaneously on social networks, and giving you the insights to actually establish those well-articulated business goals that any business initiative should have.

In that way, social media monitoring tools aren’t so much a Swiss Army Knife as they are a spoon: just about everyone in the company can find a use for them.  That being the case, good social listening tools can make the spend worth it by allowing multiple users to set up multiple profiles.  So, if you’re trying to figure out a way to get a spend through your boss for a social listening tool, the best way to do that is to make sure that your software is servicing a legitimate business need.  And so, without further ado…

5 Ways for Small Business to Get the Most out of a Social Media Monitoring Tool

1) Competitive Analysis – doing competitive analysis used to require a long, drawn out and often expensive process with external contractors and agencies who would measure difficult-to-quantify things like “share of voice” and “aided brand awareness.”  These days, social listening can be used to benchmark yourselves against your competitors, in a variety of clever ways:

  • Positioning: what are your competitors saying about themselves – and is it resonating?  Take a look at how your competition is positioning itself and its products, and see if they’re getting any feedback from their community that might inform your own marketing efforts.
  • Product: are your competitors giving any clues as to what they might be working on?
  • Share of Voice: which one of you is getting more engagement?  Vanity metrics like “followers” aren’t the best measurement of a social marketing program, in which engagement is the main goal; RT’s and mentions, on the other hand, are a good thing to examine.  Bonus: you may be able to find some solid influencers for your own brand this way.
  • Awareness: Is their brand awareness growing or shrinking – and how does that compare to yours?  One way to tell is to look at whether engagement is growing or shrinking, and whether the folks engaging with your and your competitor’s brand are the same small group of people, or whether it’s growing.

2) Creative Direction – Advertising is expensive, and you don’t want to hit an email list without testing your subject lines.  Twitter is a really great way for subject lines and messaging: try different taglines, hooks and positioning, and see what gets you the most clicks.   This method also works well in crisis communication: if you’re using trying to manage a PR crisis, check to see whether your message is resonating with your customers in a way that suits your brand.

3) Product Research – Your competitors aren’t the only ones talking about products: industry influencers and consumers are talking, too.  Put in general industry searches – you never know what you’ll find.

4) HR – Do you know what your employees and prospects are saying about you? Sites like glassdoor cater to the detractor, so it’s not always easy to get an accurate view of how you’re perceived out in the world.

5) Market Trends – There are industry influencers and consumers, and then there are investors.  All three are worth listening to when you’re looking at market trends, and any good social media monitoring software will have community features that allow you to tag and follow influencers.

For a more comprehensive view on social listening across the business organization, check our our free social listening guide, or take a listen to our social listening webinar, both of which take a deep dive on how to best use social listening throughout your company.

Further Evidence: Content Strategy Works Best When Distributed Through Diversified Channels | INFOGRAPHIC

The best content strategies are those that fully utilize all available marketing channels.

Many believe that content strategy is riddled with complications, including such scary showstoppers as budget, resources, technology … and the ever-dreaded ROI. These rumored challenges often serve as a barrier to entry into the one marketing discipline everyone is talking about today: content marketing. While these barriers are indeed real, and need to be considered when planning content strategy, a crafty marketer will find a way to get around them.

Content marketing, when combined with all the channels at your fingertips, may prove to be the most powerful tool in your arsenal. After all, as per the infographic below, we are living in a world wherein “interesting content is a top reason why people follow brands,” so we simply can’t let the content opportunity pass us by!

The Great Content Divide Shines Light on Common Marketing Concerns 

Today I came across a fantastic infographic by Adam Weinroth, CMO at OneSpot on B2C (Business 2 Community) that helps prove two points: content marketing is worthwhile, and channel diversification is the best way to put any concerns you have aside. As Adam points out in the the first half of the infographic, there is a “great divide” between a marketer’s expectations, and the reality of content marketing strategy results. To boil it down, discrepancies fall into the what I consider the 4 most common categories of marketing concern:

  • Budget: While content costs 62% less than traditional marketing, 52% of marketers are challenged by budget constraints. 
  • Resources and time: While 86% are using 12 different content strategy tactics, 59% don’t think that their teams have the resources they need.
  • Technology problems: 68% of marketers want to do more blogging, but only 43% have a mobile optimized blog.
  • ROI: 92% believe that social media is important to business, but only 33% believe they can effectively measure ROI.

The Solution to Content Strategy Concerns Lies in Channel Diversification

With these concerns in mind, as Adam and OneSpot point out, we can easily close the gap. As clever marketers, all we need to do is focus on how we can use channel diversification to solve these perceived problems:

  • Budget: With 27 million pieces of content being shared every day, how can your content cut through the noise? While it is true that content should be a mix of paid, owned and earned media, it’s easy to tip the balance in the direction your budget demands. For instance, I know plenty of marketers who create amazing content with little to no dollars being spent. As an example: yes, it’s true that spend in the form of time is needed to create a blog post. But if that post is well written, with SEO optimization in mind, you can get great results sharing on free and owned channels beyond your blog. If you also share that content on social media, through customer emails or nurturing programs, with employees and – in some cases – with media through PR pitching, your results will absolutely increase. Chances are you already have an email, social media and/or PR program in place, you may as well get the most out of your content by utilizing all existing channels. 
  • Resources and time: While 57% of marketers may feel that their lack of time is their biggest struggle, most marketers can easily throw together an amazing blog article or slide share in an hour. Often times its just a matter of re-purposing content you already created for another purpose. Just like my mom taught me to turn a leftover meat loaf dinner into sandwich lunches, I have learned to make minor adjustments to my content in order to re-purpose it for different channels. We can all agree that re-purposing content is a lot more time efficient than creating brand new content.
  • Technology problems: Optimizing our websites and blogs for mobile and tablets, AKA responsive design, is important to grab today’s fast paced on-the-go reader. And, while this should be towards the top of your tech to-do list, it should in no way slow your content strategy progress. Sure, blog content is important, and having it in a form factor to read on a cell phone is a good idea, remember than many people will still consume content on a lap top/desktop, and more importantly, you can certainly make an impact without a responsive blog. If this concern has you shying away from going all out on blog content until completed, spend time focusing on other channels where this is not a problem. I recommend looking into a webinar strategy, focusing on writing and distributing e-books, or doing SlideShare presentations; all three are fantastic content channels, and none of them are widely considered to be mobile dependent.
  • ROI: It’s true, 1 in 3 marketers feel that they are not properly measuring their social media activities. This needs to change. The truth is, there are tools out there that measure social activity quite well. What I have found is that the marketers who are not feeling confident with their social ROI are not properly setting goals that measure back to a departmental business goal. For instance, if your goal is to drive sales leads, and you know that a certain % of your web traffic converts into a lead, it is safe to assume that increasing web traffic will have a positive impact on leads (as long as the traffic is qualified). In this scenario, setting referral traffic goals from social channels is a perfectly acceptable and measurable social goal, and better yet, it can be measured at no cost using Google Analytics.

And, without further ado, the infographic that got me thinking about content strategy and channel…

Further proof that content strategy works best when integrated with Social Media, PR and Advertising

Set up a Content Marketing Program: 7 Tips to Get Started

7 Steps to a Killer Content Marketing Program

Wondering how to set up a great content marketing program? These 7 steps will guide you through the process… this devilishly handsome man, however, might lead you to the misapprehension that step 8 involves smoking a pipe for retro suave appeal, so please be aware that no content marketing program actually requires tobacco.  Or a tie.  Or a typewriter.  Suspenders, maybe.

1) Determine your content marketing program business goals

A good content marketing program, like any other marketing program, has well-articulated business goals before you start.  Are you going for lead generation?  Brand awareness?  Thought leadership positioning?  Figure out what your highest level goal is before you start writing: if you don’t, you’ll be struggling to find the R in ROI.  After all, it’s hard to achieve (or measure) a return if you haven’t articulated what return you’re trying to get.  (For more on this, check our this article on social media ROI.)

2) Set your content marketing keyword strategy

We write content for a variety of reasons: to demonstrate thought leadership, to incite a social share, to create gates for lead generation.  One natural by-product of online content is that it’s crawled by search engines, and to that end it’s critical that you content marketers out there have a working knowledge of SEO.  The content that you put online may as well service as side doors to free traffic, so be sure to do keyword research before you publish.  This is not to say that you should be writing things specifically around keywords, or stuffing articles to the point of no return, but rather to say that everything you publish is ideally keyworded thoughtfully, and maps back to a larger keyword strategy.

3) Start writing content

Just get started.  Blog posts are a really easy way to get some content flowing and seeing what comes of them.  Not everything you write has to be The Most Ingenious Piece of Content Ever Conceived, although I would suspect that someone like Tom Robbins could pull it off; that being said, putting content out there for the sake of it isn’t a good idea either.  If you’re stuck for ideas, take a look at what people are talking about within your industry (a social listening tool is very helpful for this), and add your thoughts on it.

4) Curate content

Sometimes it’s hard to think of things to write, especially when you’re already busy with setting your content marketing program goals and measuring them and such.  And, if you’re the only writer, you can grow weary of your own voice.  Curating content is a great way to keep good content on your owned media channels, while simultaneously building relationships with industry influencers.  Take a look at who’s produced something great recently, and use that piece of content as a jumping-off point for your own thoughts on the matter.  Be sure to credit your source appropriately, and when you’re sharing your article on social channels, hit the original author with an @ mention – this is a great way to engage that influencer, flatter that person, and earn yourself a RT from someone with a targeted list of followers.  A good content marketing program has a good community management and influencer strategy.

5) Have fun with your content

Writing for business doesn’t have to be boring.  If you’re bored by your own writing, imagine how your customers will react.  Consider the things that you, as a consumer, would want to read… and let that be your guide.  Not everything you produce has to be educational or informative; people put a great deal of value on simple entertainment, as evidenced by the wild popularity of Buzzfeed.

6) Market your content

Sadly, your content won’t market itself, and any good content marketing program has a plan in place to market the marketing.  Once you’ve produced something, it’s time to get on out there and market it.  Have people within your organization share it on their social channels, and don’t forget to do that yourself.  You can also take a look at sites that have published similar pieces, and reach out to let them know that you’ve published something.  With so many brands out there looking for good content, it’s wise to establish good symbiotic relationships that will help you and them garner more eyeballs.  (See this article on online influencers for PR, and this one on how to find online influencers for tips.)

7) Measure and refine your content marketing program efforts

We now come full circle to #1: have you hit your content marketing program goals?  Measuring content marketing success can be as back-of-the-napkin as looking at which posts have garnered the most social shares – after all, the social share is what gives us earned social media, and is the primary goal of social media marketing.  Or, perhaps you’re measuring lead capture.  Whatever your goals, take a gander at what content is doing the best for you, and use those findings to inform your efforts for future pieces.