Every four years, the FIFA-organised World Cup comes with great interest and enthusiasm in different nations with viewership estimated at over 3.2 billion worldwide.
Nigerian top brands that have also positioned to tap into the local and global large audience are already boosting the local advertising spend with brand messages.
Daily, the print, social and electronic media in Nigeria contain adverts around the 2018 World Cup, but some media practitioners cannot put a figure to total World Cup expenditure by brands. “I cannot tell you what my client is spending on the World Cup, but I can say that it is not a peanut,” according to a source.
For instance, in the UK, the World Cup will add an extra £40 million to ad expenditure in 2018, a report quoting a research from Zenith said.
The report monitored in TheDrum site says host nation Russia will experience a $64 million boost to ad spend, accounting for 2.1 percent of all Russian advertising expenditure in 2018. “Meanwhile, the biggest increase will come from China. It will contribute $835 million in extra ad spend, or 1 percent of the entire ad market in response to the World Cup.”
However, some marketing experts in Nigeria say media spend by Nigerian brands during this year’s World Cup kicking off in Russia Thursday will be huge on account of Nigeria’s participation in the global tournament.
Those who spoke with BusinessDay said marketing and promotions around the World Cup would double this year compared to total spend in 2014, when Nigeria did not qualify for the tournament hosted in Brazil.
Major players in Nigeria’s FMCG sector, pharmaceutical companies, pay-TV stations and ICT firms are engaging in sponsorships around the World Cup, but they are careful in using images and icons that suggest direct association with the World Cup, as this will pitch them against the World Cup organisers.
Already, brands like NBL, Emzor, Aiteo Group, and many others have joined the passion with encouragement and congratulatory adverts for Nigeria, stating that ‘Russia here we come.’ The brands are encouraging Nigerian team for the World Cup, an event that transcends religion, ethnicity, politics, language and age.
According to analysts, this trend is expected to continue as Nigeria perhaps progresses in the tournament.
With big brands already leveraging the enthusiasm associated with World Cup, Emeka Okeke, the CEO of Media Fuse Dentsu Aegis Network, Nigeria is strongly convinced that the spend this year will be better than in 2014 when Nigeria failed to qualify for the World Cup.
Akonte Ekine, CEO of Absolute PR, said many of the big companies had earlier in the year made budget provisions for marketing during the World Cup because of the large followership of the tournament.
Some other companies are leveraging the tournament for product promotions. For instance, Spectranet 4GLTE is garnering support for Nigeria’s National Team with a nationwide consumer promotion, Connect & Win Big World Cup Bonanza.
In his view earlier, John Ehiguese, CEO of MediaCraft, a public relation agency had said there would be a big rush by corporate to be part of the World Cup as the platform presents a brand mileage opportunity for them. “The 2018 World Cup would be the focus of most brands and we are expecting excitement in the media industry.”
Earlier, Jenkins Alumona, the CEO of Strategic Outcomes, an integrated marketing communication firm based in Lagos and sports enthusiast agreed that companies would key in to the event, he however said that budget for it by other brands would depend on the economy.
“Following Nigeria’s participation and as football popularity grows, there would likely be an increase in the marketing budget on account of the global event but this depends on the performance of some companies in the economy,” he said.
Jerry Oche, CEO of Zowasel, an eCommerce marketplace who also estimated that brands would largely key in to the event, believed that most marketing platforms would be used by brands during the World Cup for consumer connection.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup, which would end on July 15, 2018 would present opportunity not only to sponsor global brands but to many brand around the world who want to tap in to the opportunity. But according to experts, some advert messages would be lost during the one month event but the most creative messages would be remembered and make impact on the brands months after the World Cup.
Reports indicate that the World Cup competition in Brazil in 2014 reached a global in-house TV audience of about 3.2 billion and this could increase for the Russia- hosted event as football population continues to increase.
A total of 32 teams will battle it out to be crowned World Champions, and a total of 64 games will be played during the event. Germany is the defending champions who beat Brazil 7 -1 in 2014 in Brazil to win the Cup.