Welcome to the All Blacks
While the rest of us waited for the start of the Rugby World Cup, advertisers were hard at work creating rugby-themed campaigns—with widely varying approaches and, of course, equally varying degrees of success. Countless brands used the themes and values of the rugby world to promote their products expressly to World Cup fans.
Of these, there was one I especially liked: a self-promotion trailer for “Canal+” that relied solely on mood and the element of surprise, managing to “talk rugby” without ever showing a single field, player, or ball! A really smooth, fine ad. It is taking me me several viewings to identify all the symbols of New Zealand and the team shown in this original teaser: a black fish, a black dog…
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When Red Bull Media House, Brain Farm Digital Cinema and Quicksilver team up with the best pro snowboarders, the result is The Art of Flight – a film celebrating the art of snowboarding that took two years of work and adventures to make. The movie’s landscapes are beautifully filmed, the tricks get insane aerial amplitude, and the soundtrack – brainchild of France’s Anthony Gonzalez and his band M83 – evokes high, faraway snow-capped peaks that are the stuff of dreams.
Thanks to global Web media coverage, the trailer for The Art of Flight has had 1.5 million viewings in its first week on the Web. The film will be launched in cinemas, downloadable from iTunes, and available on DVD and Blu-ray. A limited-edition book version will be released and, at the request of Red Bull, an 8-part “making-of” TV documentary will air in early 2012.
Brain Farm first achieved fame with the 2008 film That’s It, That’s All – an earlier collaboration between Travis Rice (widely regarded as the world’s best snowboarder) and Curt Morgan (filmmaker/art director) that suggested what The Art of Flight now confirms: the era of do-it-yourself snow-sports filming is over. Both films bring extreme aesthetics and elite vision to winter sports cinematography, using state-of-the-art equipment such as the HD Cineflex V14 camera – a gyro-stabilized remote system with software first developed for the military – and the high-speed Phantom HD Gold camera, which produces graceful slow motion.
Red Bull is known for sports sponsorship, to which it devotes more than 15% of its yearly revenue – revenue that reached 3.785 billion Euros in 2010, thanks to that year’s worldwide consumption of more than 4.204 billion units of Red Bull energy drinks. The Art of Flight’s production budget – still confidential, of course – is estimated at several million dollars.
The Art of Flight’s global cinema tour will kick off in New York on September 7. The first showings in Europe will be in Munich on November 8 and in Paris on November 26.
One regret: the women’s snowboard does not seem to be represented in this project, while Quicksilver sponsors many events in the feminine snow-sports.
The Grenoble Hockey team “Les Brûleurs de Loups” (“the Wolf Burners”) has a new advertising campaign, and it is a campaign with a difference. The big sign that caught our attention at the Grenoble Ice rink had the distinctive look of a vintage movie poster – nothing at all like a typical sports promotion.
Intrigued, Harding Marketing investigated.
We contacted Monsieur David Bertuzzi, the team’s communications manager. He explained that the Brûleurs’ new management group wanted to reframe the team’s advertising, and the new campaign is part of its strategy to depart from traditional sports promos. For the last two years, the group has worked to define the team’s core values: RESPECT, HUMILITY, PERFORMANCE. Along the way, it discovered that these were also the core values associated with families – especially in the 1920s.
So, how did that evolve into a vintage movie theme?
“For a sports team, a sports-related campaign would be ’old news’,” M. Bertuzzi says. Along with taking a fresh approach to promoting the team, he adds, the Brûleurs’ ‘20s cinema-style poster also delivers the message that seeing a hockey game is a leisure activity – like going to see a movie.
Plus, it shows that hockey players are easygoing, open-minded people who are happy to dress up to create a special, fun ad.
Even the poster’s tagline — “I’m Hockey” (“I’m OK”) got a reaction from us – which was, of course, exactly the idea!
World-famous beer brand Heineken, widely known as the armchair-footballer’s best friend, won big points at the Milan AC-Real Madrid UEFA match with an unusual strategy: Heineken offered Milan fans’ female companions free tickets to the lyric opera — but only if they could get their boyfriends to come along. The opera’s scheduled date and time, though, would confront the men with a very difficult choice: miss THE match, or please the girlfriend.
In the end, more than 1000 courageous guys made the right choice and opted to miss the football broadcast — and after 15 minutes of violin and arias, pain and regret showed on 1000 faces. But then a message appeared: “Hard to say no to your girlfriend, isn’t it? And to the match?” A few seconds later, a new message popped up: “How could you even think of missing the big match?” (Smiles started reappearing on those same 1000 faces.) Then came the winning play: “Are you still with us? Real and Milan AC are on the pitch; let’s enjoy the match together!” Shouts of joy and thunderous applause …
1.5 milion people watched this extreme fake-out on Sky Sports, more than 10 million saw it the following day on TV news, and it generated 5 milion unique Internet visits in the next two weeks — along with thousands more on blog and social media sites, which are still spreading the buzz.
“Heineken. Made to entertain.” Seems these guys got the message.
Media coverage of exceptional proportions, an online video gone viral with more than a million views, a new sponsor at the bargain price of 16 100 euros, and a 7 550 euro donation to the Association for Research against Brain Tumors (ARTC): these are the first fruits of an extraordinary marketing effort by Romain Mesnil, production company KiciProd, and SportlabGroup.
The Web video of Mesnil — 2007 world silver medallist pole vaulter – conspicuously NOT wearing his previous sponsor’s jersey was launched on 26 March. An early April Fool? No, just a fresh approach to finding sponsorship in lean times while drawing public attention to a worthy cause.
The point of the video was to publicise Mesnil’s auction of his 2009 season on eBay, where even companies with limited financial resources had a chance to make a sponsorship bid. Also auctioned were his jersey and several other personal items. All the money collected went to charity.
The new sponsor is OVH (On Vous Héberge), a company specializing in Web hosting and a newcomer in the area of sports sponsorship.
This unusual marketing concept might be one of the most successful ways in history to gain exposure!
Starting in 2003 with a monthly publication, then a weekly since 2004, the no cost magazine Sport celebrated its 200th edition in January 2009. Sport covers not only traditional sports like soccer, rugby, tennis, basketball, etc. but also features ‘extreme sports’ like surfing, snowboarding, and skateboarding. Sport also writes about all equestrian sports and mountain climbing.
Sport emphasizes a high quality graphic design, despite using a lower quality paper for its publication.
Currently 500,000 copies are distributed across 11 cities in France. The magazine is also distributed in the UK with a press run of 350,000 in London.
Here is a very relevant advertising video of the famous sports brand ASICS. (Asics was rewarded for the best design at the Eurobest 2008 festival of European advertising).
The Grenoble Business School of Management released its first report on the “Institute Sport & Management” at the end of 2007. This initiative is based on 3 types of actions:
- Applied research: To think about topics such as “the meaning of the Olympics today”. With the recent events around the Bejing 2008 Olympic Games, this subject sounds crucial for future generations. The Institute has also launched some applied research on Sponsoring and Human Resource Management. Already many top-level sport people have joined the initiative as well as major companies involved in worldwide business.
- Education: To offer top-level athletes an opportunity to follow an MBA program or similar during their athletic career so they hold a recognized degree at the end of their athletically competitive years. The Institute Sport & Management also proposes programs to train coaches. François Leccia, the leader of the Institute, is actually one of the co-authors of a book (“Le management à l’école du Rugby”) on management strategy based on the best practices learned from the Rugby.
- Relationship between sport and business environments: To create a link between both environments, as well as the country’s education systems, in bringing all sports values such as conviviality, pleasure, teamspirit, etc. The vocation of these initiatives is to bridge the gap between these environments and define how they may benefit from each other from a cultural and human perspective.
The first meeting of the Applied Research will be held at the swimming circle of Marseille (France) on July 18-19, 2008. Many personalities from the worldwide sporting community and the business community will be attending the event, such as Florence Masnada (triple Olympic medal-holder) and companies like Lagardère Group and Capgemini.
To find out more about the Institute Sport & Management, visit the Grenoble Business School of Management Web site here http://www.grenoble-em.com/1075-institut-sport—management-1.aspx
The 2008 French Open website is on line. This new version is more user friendly and Web 2.0 oriented.
Nike has become a master in the art of street marketing, as we can see every day as the Nike logo is seen more on our streets. This campaign is from Asia.
An excellent street marketing operation launched by Nike in a few streets of the United States.
To inform people that running can be a pleasure, Reebok France launched an ad campaign that they call Run Easy. It was made interactive by organizing the first virtual race around the world. www.goruneasy.com/RunEasy/
The best runner wins a 350-Euro, complete Running Reebok suit. Each attendee could personalize his/her avatar choosing among the range of suits that can be won.
This is a good example of how Internet can serve an advertizing campaign and extend the buzz around it.
The brand le coq will premiere 3 films, 7 news paper ads, and various banners throughout Europe to promote “the pleasure of sport”. Yannick and Joakim noah, Sébastien Loeb, and Frédéric Michalak will showcase in this marketing campaign.