European Activation Case Studies

In Mid-March 2022, Asian crypto exchange Bitget leveraged its new sleeve sponsorship with Serie A giants Juventus through a video-led digital campaign fronted by four members of the team aimed at boosting brand awareness and driving new customers into the sponsor’s sales funnel.

Running from December 2020 to May 2021, Sevilla FC sleeve sponsor Valvoline activated its partnership during the pandemic through a bespoke digital football content platform launched through a six-part, player-fronted ‘Loyalty FC’ video series which aimed to highlight brand/club synergies and drive home value-based messages.

Benfica shirt sponsor Emirates marked the start of 2022 with an on-pitch skills challenge offering season ticketholders the chance to win round trips to Dubai.

Over the 2020-21 Christmas holiday, Chelsea teamed up with shirt sponsor Three for a pandemic support initiative that encouraged UK sports fans to support each other over the festive season.

In the last week of November 2021, rapid grocery delivery firm Zapp leveraged its Chelsea partnership to support its first UK television commercial – a player skills challenge called ‘Blue Always Delivers’.

United shirt sponsor TeamViewer recognised some of the pandemic ‘Frontline Heroes’ through a digital-first contest delivering VIP days out at the December 2021 match v Arsenal.

A team of Spurs ambassadors fronted Getir’s January 2022 campaign, which used social spots to encourage fans watching live matches to order from the rapid grocery delivery app.

Activating its Norwich City partnership in 2020-21, men’s makeup brand War Paint for Men worked with current and former Norwich players on a long-form video series that aimed to support positive conversations around men’s mental health on and off the pitch.

Cadbury’s umbrella 2020-21 initiative leveraged its 20 individual UK football club partnerships through a programme of over 100 activations aimed at reinforcing its positioning as part of country’s cultural fabric.

Telecoms newcomer Finetwork activated its partnership with the Spanish football federation around the climax of the 2021 Uefa Nations League via a press conference stunt involving Spain national-team Luis Enrique.

At the end of 2020, Berlin real estate agent Homeday activated its shirt sponsorship of hometown club Hertha to boost brand awareness throughout Germany.

In late 2020 and early 2021, Hisense launched its new PSG partnership with an international player-led campaign to boost brand awareness, champion the brand’s commitment to innovation and highlight its focus on detail.

After 12 clubs tried and failed to breakaway from Uefa and form a European ‘super league’ in April 2021, Heineken used its Uefa Champions League rights for a low-latency social campaign echoing fan outrage with a touch of humour.

In November 2020, Swedish women’s bandy side Skutskärs IF teamed up with Grit Sportswear to create a hybrid match jersey and associated launch campaign championing gender equality in Swedish sport.

During October’s Uefa Nations League finals, Hisense built on its Euro 2020 #UpgradeYourHome activation with a pair of campaign contests.

In October 2021, Chelsea official tyre partner Yokohama teamed up with 90min to showcase the brand’s fun side with a prank-style viral featuring Timo Werner, Mason Mount and Jorginho.

In April 2021, the European Tour paired up with lead partner Callaway and professional golfer Marcus Armitage for a world record attempt at ‘The Farthest Shot in Golf in a Moving Car’.

At the start of June 2021 adidas and Real Madrid rolled out a multi-stage unity campaign to celebrate the spirit of Madrid and promote the team’s 2021/22 season home, away and third kits.

Uefa Champions League partner Santander activated its rights in the UK through a virtual campaign from March through December 2020 aimed at helping teach children numeracy from home during Covid-19.

Leveraging the October 2020 cup match between two teams its sponsors – Bayern Munich and fifth-tier side 1. FC Düren – MAN exploited media interest in the underdog by giving the club a state-of-the-art coach with bespoke branding.

On 12 August 2020, Heineken and Uefa livestreamed a global ‘Opening Party’ to celebrate the restart of the Champions League and Europa League after the pandemic-enforced hiatus.

In August 2021, ahead of the start of the Premier League season, adidas and Arsenal FC launched the team’s third strip through a mockumentary featuring fictional Gunners super fan ‘Len’.

In August 2020, with the pandemic forcing fans watching the new season from home, Premier League partner Coca-Cola launched a campaign aimed at making the soft drink part of the at-home matchday routine.

At the start of the new 2021-22 Premier League season, Socios.com and Everton ran a campaign to promote the first $EFC Fan Token Offering, which led to all 500,000 digital tokens selling out in just four minutes.

In March 2021, Burger King sponsored the Spanish release of the official NBA game – NBA2K21 – through an in-game campaign that challenged players to win free items by making shots on the virtual court.

In September 2020, the Mondelez-owned chocolate business leveraged its MUFC rights to bring some of its employees to Old Trafford as the culmination of an internal staff reward programme.

In May and June 2021, KNVB media partner DPG Media drove excitement ahead of the delayed Euro 2020 with a fan vote to find the most popular Dutch national team shirt of all time.

Mobile game developer Supercell’s three-season partnership with PSG involved management-level learnings as well as direct promotion for the sponsor’s Brawl Stars game.