The FIFA Worlds Cup is the greatest football show on earth: the world’s most-watched event for the world’s most popular sport. In India however, football fanaticism pales in comparison to the cricket craze. And this was a challenge that was only compounded by the fact that India did not field a team in this year’s competition.
LodestarUM had to find a way to reach India’s pockets of soccer fandom while highlighting Coca-Cola’s core brand communication of unity, togetherness and happiness to bring the global fervor of the World Cup - which Coca Cola referred to as the ‘World’s Cup’ - to India’s door.
The challenge was to elevate the story and social thought behind Coca-Cola’s ‘World’s Cup’ and connect it with the brand by making it the most talked-about topic across media platforms and the digital/social audience at large.
The vision was to reach as many people in as many regions as possible. Apart from the scalability of the content/creative reach, Coca-Cola wanted to measure the success of this campaign through the impact it created and lives it touched.
Over the course of a stop in Kolkata on the World Cup Trophy’s global tour, a global digital campaign-activation day and participation in the creation of the world’s largest digital photo mosaic, in addition to the 33-day-long campaign during the FIFA World’s Cup, LodestarUM utilized a strategy that centered on the power of social advocacy and the development of a variety of creative engagement hooks.
Across a combination of platforms including Twitter, Facebook, Vine, Instagram and Whatsapp, the agency built an extensive research program using insights from listening, monitoring and on-going conversations to understand when to post, what to post and how to get maximum engagement on different social platforms.
Identifying India’s top football-fanatics through their research, LodestarUM selected a core team of 250 advocates and influencers to make the campaign viral. These influencers were arranged in a three-tiered system and were used to seed stories around the ‘World’s Cup’ campaign, based on their common interests, social affinity and authority levels. By seeding positive conversations and tweeting and posting football-related content, the advocates directly engaged with football fans across the country.
The agency seeded the stories around the continuous stream of content (including the matches, country statistics and even fashion and hair-do’s) to spread uplifting stories that highlighted the message of global unity around the World’s Cup, using television, radio and on-the-ground activation as catalysts for online engagement.
Coinciding with the arrival of the World’s Cup Trophy in Kolkata, the Coca-Cola Social-Media-Centre (Samvaad) shortlisted a teen advocate as India’s biggest football fan, on the basis of his love for Coca-Cola and his passion for the sport, using multi-level scrutiny of conversations (and relevance) on social networking platforms. The activity generated 15 million impressions and nationwide trending on Twitter.
On the day of Coca-Cola’s global integrated campaign activation, Samvaad put together a 12-hour conversation timeline coupled with the influencer strategy to become a trending topic within three hours of launch. The extended share of conversations across Facebook and Twitter helped to achieve around 250 million impressions and 200,000 fan interactions within a single day.
Coca-Cola’s mission in creating the world’s largest digital photo mosaic – the Coca-Cola Happiness Flag – was to create a crowd-sourced symbol blending creativity and technology to unite fans around the world. A number channels were created to collect images, including an automatic “two-way conversation” integration to encourage submissions.
Football-loving users were researched and their generic interactions observed. Based on user behaviors and interest in the sport, LodestarUM seeded stories around the Happiness Flag and how to submit photos. The results were surprising – India finished second in the world, submitting 13,000 pictures and was invited to take part in the FIFA World Cup Opening Ceremony in Brazil.
Throughout the Cup, creative content developed in the FIFA Live Wire Room continued to be spread over social media by the agency's three-tiered network of advocates.
During the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Coca-Cola became the ‘Most Recognized Brand’ globally, while generating over 6 billion impressions across social platforms, being discussed in over 263,000 conversations and with nearly 93,000 people directly engaged with the brand content.
Positive brand sentiment in India increased from 6% in March to over 18% in June on Twitter. During the campaign Coca-Cola garnered 80,000 new fans on Facebook - twice the average for its summer campaigns. Its average reach per post was 742,000, compared to a 180,000 summer-campaign average.
Social purchase intent for Coca-Cola and social brand love both increased by at least 600% over the course of one month.