Direct Line Blog

Waiting to see the after-effects of the World Cup

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On Sunday, I sat in a pub in midtown Manhattan watching the World Cup final, the much anticipated face-off between The Netherlands and Spain. The results didn't go my way—with Spain scoring a goal in the extra time given, due to the 0-0 result at the end of the regulation match.

While I sat watching the game among soccer supporters heavily weighted toward Spain—and was one of the few not cheering at the final result—I still reveled in the fact that the sport is in fact loved by many in this country—and is finally getting the attention it deserves.

The World Cup is amazing—I know it firsthand, having interned for it when the US served as host country in 1994. I will miss seeing soccer balls dangling from pub fronts around the City, the camaraderie, the painted faces.

I'm sure those advertisers who aligned with it as a messaging vehicle will feel some sort of loss. I wonder how brands will seek to continue with the new relationships they have gained through their tie-in to World Cup.

For instance, in addition to its traditional ad spots, Hyundai designed a social media program, tweeting World Cup scores from the onset of tournament to encourage more people to follow it. The marketer also created a mobile alert sign-up on Facebook.

There were other interactive elements as a part of this as well, such as A "Loyalty" quiz, asking fans questions to determine the strength of their allegiance to their favorite team. For fans that were more creatively-inclined, Hyundai's YouTube brand channel offered them a chance to create a video celebrating their team.

It will be interesting to see the impact of these results as brands, I'm sure, seek to measure the effects of the World Cup.

I'm waiting, too, as an indicator of how much the sport finally may be growing in the US.

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