OBJECTIVE identify the creative strategy, name and visual expression to be used in everything from in-store displays, packaging, social media and traditional advertising.
CHALLENGE how to succeed sponsoring a sport where your brands lack the relevance of Nike and the history of Coke?
INSIGHT in the US, soccer is still a poorly understood game. Although it #1 by number of players, 70% of them drop out of the sport by age 12. Being passionate about soccer is like being in love with the wrong girl in school: fans often have to justify themselves, wishing others only knew how awesome she really is.
SOLUTION we created Pass The Love, asking each fan to turn one friend into a fan and thus help the Beautiful Game grow in the US.
Pass the Love took off: after appearing on packs of Oreos and Ritz the fans and players adopted it, becoming the rallying cry posted in the team’s World Cup’s lockers and a top trend on Twitter.
The 2015 women’s final became one of the most watched games in US history, exceeding the 2014 NBA Finals and World Series.
The ladies won, and #PassTheLove confetti rained down on them as they paraded down the Canyon of Heroes in downtown NY. Goal!
OBJECTIVE boost awareness in the lead up to the FIFA World Cup
CHALLENGE Nike and Adidas had famous campaigns, enormous budgets and legendary athletes. Puma did not even have a positioning.
SOLUTION interviewing players we learned that consumers’ perception of Adidas and Nike’s was strikingly similar: the tough American/German coach driven by success with an almost militaristic approach discipline (just do it/impossible is nothing). Puma on the other hand was seen as more easy going, the coach that reminds you to have fun.
Semiotically, Nike and Adidas have both, for years, been using the language of Duty as the path to Glory (much as “the few, the proud, the Marines“). By talking to players we learned that all that hard work is just the cost of entry for any competitive endeavor: after that, what makes the difference is how much you enjoy yourself, how much you love what you do.
Like our competitors, we decided to tap into the Belonging instinct that rules team sports. But instead of insisting on the cost of entry (fulfilling a duty), we claimed Love, its chemical reward, awarding Puma the emotional high-ground.
RESULTS brilliantly executed by Syrup, the Love strategy became a viral sensation giving Puma more visibility than Adidas -the event’s official sponsor- in the weeks leading up to the World Cup.
Even after agencies changed, the brief kept paying off and lead Droga5 to Cannes Gold.
Imitation is certainly the highest form of flattery: today there are no fewer than 3 agencies and a dozen portfolios claiming credit for this work. If you encounter them, ask them about it. It’ll be fun.