The FIFA World Cup 2018 will begin in June, providing a fantastic opportunity for brands to get closer to their audiences. That’s why I have invited Ana Lopez, Marketing and Communications Manager at Adsmovil, to talk about how brands can focus their digital advertising during the World Cup – VK.
Why is the World Cup such an opportunity for brands to “score a goal?” Football, known as soccer in the United States, draws all types of people together. The sport is played in most countries, and it is practically impossible for an event this size not to grab people’s attention—even nonfans.
According to FIFA, 3.2 billion people watched the 2014 World Cup Brazil, 280 million of which watched it on a mobile device. This year, it is estimated more than 3 billion people will watch the matches online.
Although television will continue to be the platform of choice to watch matches (more than 200 countries broadcast this sporting event), mobile devices are positioning themselves as an essential channel for brand advertising campaigns. According to an IAB study from before the 2014 World Cup, 48 percent of the world’s soccer fans planned to use their smartphones to stay informed in real-time. In Mexico, that percentage was higher than the global average (56 percent).
So what opportunities do brands have in terms of mobile advertising strategies? Adsmovil believes it provides an ideal playing field for this type of advertising, in which creative campaigns can be executed even while people watch matches in real-time. We feel the following will have the greatest impact on advertising campaigns:
- Mobile video: Several studies indicate 57 percent of consumers watch videos on their smartphones more than on their computers, most likely because they can interact with them, which makes them more effective on this platform.
- Match times: Soccer fans use their mobiles as a second screen, either to get and share the latest scores in real-time, comment on plays, etc. In Latin America and the United States, most matches will be broadcast at noon, when audiences may not have a television screen readily available. This provides an opportunity for brands to accompany their audiences during this unique time when mobile devices will be a key communications channel.
- Best use of data and programmatic purchases: We can use data to optimize digital strategies in real-time. Variables such as time of day, context and location, among others, can be used to send audiences relevant messages. In the case of the World Cup, brands can influence users with messages in line with a match’s real-time score, or target only audiences interested in soccer. Thanks to programmatic purchasing and technology, all this is possible on mobile devices.
- Mobile apps: Branding is essential for communications, and app content plays an increasingly important role in media strategies. In-app traffic makes a difference because of its high-quality; to develop and publish an app on Google or Apple, developers must go through strict security controls and content review, making it quite different from the wider internet.
Apps help us reach consumers when they are in all kinds of settings and moods—such as excited and happy, in the case of matches. For informational apps, the biggest impact lies not in content, but rather in specific messages. This makes them valuable, because you can relate to consumers in a pertinent way without being intrusive.
What is pivotal here is relevance. There is no one strategy you should follow because it varies from one brand to another. Bear in mind also that mobile technology is very different from web technology, so you can create and execute completely different campaigns. Any brand can develop a mobile advertising strategy for the World Cup. The key is to have the right message tailored to mobile platforms’ unique capabilities to get the desired results.