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World Cup Marketing? Tread Carefully.

June 4, 2014

Were you planning to use the now imminent Fifa World Cup in Brazil as a hook for your upcoming email marketing campaigns? If so, tread carefully. Remember that only official sponsors can use the Fifa logos. 

Fifa is due to collect $4 billion for its own coffers from the event so, of course, they are very protective of the use of their logos (see Marketing Week ). For the lucky sponsors it will bring great kudos as well as a revenue stream, maximum exposure and unlimited opportunities.

So what about if you who want to create a buzz around the event with your own email campaigns? Be aware of the rules if you want to avoid financial sanctions. You could be sued for trade mark infringement and could be liable for any damages. Injunctions may also be taken out to block a business from using the trade mark in the future.

It might be tempting to put the World Cup logo on your summer email, like you might add hearts to a February valentines promotion, but don’t! Unless you are a sponsor and have permission from Fifa you shouldn’t use emblems, words, slogans and event titles.

For a full list of dos and don’ts see the official Fifa guide.

However if you don’t have the marketing budget of Coca Cola, Castrol etc. then all is not lost. Fifa are not as strict as eg the Olympic Committees and you can still use the general themes of football, Brazil etc. which gives a lot of scope for creativity without landing you in trouble.  The above document actually gives some good advice as to what you can use. 

Whatever you do, remember that there will be a flurry of campaigns devoted to the event.  Some people don’t actually like football and will be sick of the sight of football related marketing activity in a few week’s time. That’s your cue to get a little more creative and start the backlash with your ‘sick of the World Cup already?’ subject lines!

Posted by Jenni Malley
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