The FIFA Women’s World Cup this summer saw new levels of investment into the women’s game – resulting in some brilliant pieces of advertising. Here are my top five standout adverts from the tournament:
1. Nike “Dream Further”
This stunning advert, produced by Wieden + Kennedy, features 10-year-old athlete and model Makena Cook and the key stars of the tournament. Fast-phased, skilled, celebratory, provocative, fun, and just so damn cool. Creatively illustrating what the women’s game is about, ultimately highlighting the role these athletes play in inspiring the next generation of female ballers.
Fair play to Nike for how they capitalised on the tournament despite not being an official FIFA sponsor. Nike sponsored 14 of the 24 teams, including 3 of the semi-finalists. This was also the first time Nike produced bespoke designs for the women’s teams, another big landmark moment for the game. Through their clever team and athlete centred advertising, Nike were able to produce brilliant content around the tournament, most likely achieving better brand association metrics than Adidas.
2. Lucozade “Three Lionesses” (England)
Lucozade Sport became the official sports drink for the Lionesses in the spring leading up to the World Cup, adding to their existing partnership with the Three Lions.
The TVC plays on the emotions of supporting your national team, regardless of whether it’s the Men’s or Women’s team playing. I love the script, the regional accent, the art direction, and the genuine sense of pride and support the spot generates.
In addition to the TVC, Lucozade produced specially designed bottles featuring the Lionesses.
3. Germany x Commerzbank Squad Launch Video
German brilliance. Dry, witty, poking fun at the ridiculous treatment of women’s football teams over the years. You have to laugh at the tea set reference. Women's footballers are badass, there's no question about it.
If I were to critique, the ad has obvious resemblances to Nike’s Nothing Beats a Londoner (2018) campaign. I’m a little surprised Adidas would copy arch-rival Nike. But perhaps there’s no such thing as an original idea in advertising anyway…
4. Visa “One Moment Can Change The Game” (official FIFA sponsor)
Encouraging participation, getting people to understand they need to act in order to see change. Attend that match, buy those football boots, support your daughter to start playing. The advert includes the stories of a number of women’s football players, and the deciding moments in their lives for how they ended up on the global stage. It displays how moments of encouragement and acceptance can help impact someone’s life.
It’s an emotive advert with an important message: we are all responsible for growing equality in football, on and off the pitch.
The TVC was aired in 33 markets.
5. Budweiser "We Won't Stop Watching" (USA)
Bit of an American execution, but I love that Budweiser are taking on the all-important message of tournament legacy. Enjoyed this summer? So show your support at home. Despite seeing big crowds during the World Cup, most teams go home to play in half empty stadium for their league and national team matches. Encouraging continued support is incredibly important for the sustained growth of women’s football.
The ad is narrated by Brandi Chastain, two-time FIFA Women's World Cup champion, two-time Olympic gold-medalist, coach, and sports broadcaster.
Several NWSL clubs have reported tickets for their first post-tournament matches have already sold out. Let’s hope the interest remains throughout the season.
Finally, not a TVC so couldn’t make it to this list, but special mention goes to the Lionesses’ squad announcement. 23 celebs revealing the players who made Phil Neville’s cut through their own personal social accounts. From Becks to Ellie Goulding to James Corden to Emma Watson, the campaign had an estimated reach of reportedly 219m and got the team a big awareness and interest boost ahead of the tournament. Best use of social media this summer, in my opinion.
For advice on marketing, promoting and partnering with the women’s game, get in touch!