Marketing Insights from the FIFA Women’s and ICC Cricket World Cups

Jul 11, 2019 • Aaron Goldman

I can find marketing lessons – and newsletter inspiration – just about anywhere. From Game of Thrones to Single’s Day to Jam Bands to Fortnite to Harley Davidsons, I’ve run the gamut. But nothing stirs my soul like sport. Whether it’s basketball, (American) football, baseball, horse racing, tennis or boxing, I’m always tuned in with my CMO hat on.

This week I’ve got football (American soccer) and cricket on my mind. In the FIFA Women’s World Cup, the U.S. delivered a record-setting performance, making its impact felt on and off the pitch. The team started off with a bang in terms of results (13-0 over Thailand) and social engagement (280% lift) but sentiment was just 69% due in part to the team’s unapologetic style.

To its credit, the team never wavered in the way it played nor the message it carried and both engagement and sentiment picked up throughout the tournament, peaking in the finals at 950% and 84% respectively. Among the many takeaways for marketers from the U.S. triumph are that people are brands (see Megan Rapinoe), storytelling is key (see goal celebrations), and timing is everything (see Nike’s ad).

Social Media scores for US National Team during 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup

Engagements include mentions, retweets, post likes, and comments from official Facebook Pages on Twitter handles during the 2019 Women’s World Cup. Engagement lift represents the current day’s increase vs. the average over the period after removing a 6.5% trimmed mean.

Looking at the Cricket World Cup, while the ratings may not be as high as football/soccer, there’s no question the popularity of the sport is surging. As such, the event has created massive opportunities for brands to reach highly-passionate audiences both on the grounds and on the telly. In terms of the latter, we pulled the top advertisers for the past month during matches and found Nissan to have driven away from the field with more than double the number of ad minutes of the next closest brand. As an official sponsor of the event, Nissan is sure to reach eyeballs trained anywhere close to the matches. This is a great lesson for marketers to consider “surround-sound” strategies that will keep brands top of mind at all apertures.

TV Ad Rankings for ICC Cricket World Cup

Measured for TV ads appearing on Sky Sports around Cricket World Cup matches, from May 30th to June 30th 2019 using Teletrax data via Kinetiq.

The Cricket finals on Sunday are sure to be riveting but, regardless of the outcome, we can be assured that the brands that emerge victorious will be those that align themselves with the values their audiences hold dear. As for the technology needed to get in the heads of your consumers ­– rest assured, it’s all in Scope.

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