Despite the U.S. team’s crushing loss against Belgium in Tuesday’s match, brands didn’t hold back the pregame hype, postgame high-fives — or guessing the victors from the get-go.
MillerCoors’ Smith & Forge Hard Cider went after Anheuser-Busch InBev Belgium brew Stella Artois, Advertising Age reports. “Hey Belgium, in America we spell C-I-D-E-R, not R-E,” goes the man in the ad. The ad ended with “Huzzah! A toast to a great match” and the hashtag #IBelieveThatWeWillWin.
Smith & Forge Hard Cider — Hey Belgium
by Smith & Forge Hard Cider via YouTube
And how’d that game go? Well, Cortana guessed it right — again. Digital assistant Cortana for Windows Phones 8.1 powered by Bing Predicts — aka Microsoft’s rival to Siri — is 8-0 in predicting World Cup match winners so far, the Verge reports. Bing launched the event outcome prediction feature in April and also predicted outcomes in “American Idol,” “The Voice,” and “Dancing With the Stars”, according to the Bing blog. We’ll find out if Cortana’s winning prediction streak continues Friday.
— Marcus Ash (@marcusash) June 29, 2014
How will Cortana stand up to fans’ own predictions? Add to the mix Microsoft’s Sporting Mouth Social Shootout contest. Fans wager with buddies to guess game outcomes for a change to win a Lumia phone and other prizes.
How to Play #LumiaShootOut
by NokiaInnovationLLC via YouTube
Celebrating U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard
Speaking of the U.S.-Belgium match, there were plenty of shout outs from brands in the form of newsjacking to goalkeeper Tim Howard after his 16 saves in the game. Budweiser named him Man of the Match. Marketing Week reports that MERCEDES AMG Petronas Formula One Team on Twitter quipped that Howard could stop a Mercedes AMF 1 Grand Prix race car if the brakes failed under the #ThingsTimHowardCouldSave hashtag.
— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) July 2, 2014
The hashtag generated a heap of similar responses about Howard on Twitter, under the same hashtag.
— Brian Gottwalt (@Gott_Bry) August 25, 2014
— Alexis Kay (@WAUGHflehouse) July 2, 2014
Brands that focus on timeliness in their social media approach to react to game play and even social media gaffes around the tournament have consistently grabbed attention. One thing marketing teams should plan on is staying flexible with game goings-on and being able to adapt to what happens on and off the pitch.