Budweiser unveils its biggest ever global campaign ahead of the FIFA World Cup

AB InBev’s CMO says Budweiser’s new campaign aims to inspire, engage and energise the 3.2 billion football fans tuning into the biggest sporting event in the world this summer.

Budweiser is launching its biggest ever global campaign ahead of the FIFA World Cup which kicks off in Russia next month.

Speaking on a conference call today (8 May) Miguel Patricio, the global CMO of Budweiser’s parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev, says its new campaign will champion Budweiser’s dream of bringing people together while energising and inspiring the 3.2 billion football fans watching the World Cup.

The campaign, titled ‘Light up the FIFA World Cup’ and produced by the company’s lead agency Anomaly, aims to “encapsulate the unparalleled euphoric energy of the world’s biggest sporting event. It features the largest beer delivery to date, plus the deployment of noise-activated red light cups.

Budweiser, the official beer sponsor of the World Cup for 32 years, will launch it new campaign in more than 50 countries, marking its biggest ever global activation.

The campaign features a video of an ambitious beer delivery which shows drones carrying Budweiser from its Brewery in St. Louis, Missouri (US) to World Cup watching parties, from Shanghai to Rio de Janeiro, and to Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

The video will be broken down into 15, 30 and 90 second ads for TV and social media and also features fans cheering and activating Budweiser’s Red Light Cups. The cups include a microphone and three LED lights. The microphone picks up changes in decibels, for instance if fans are cheering or clapping the cup will light up accordingly.

“This is a fun energetic story, in delivering beer and energy in an elevated and unexpected way. It’s the most epic beer delivery of all time,” says Budweiser’s global marketing VP Brian Perkins.

More than eight million cups will be offered inside football stadiums in Russia, at viewings events and in bars around the world.

Perkins says the Russian World Cup is anticipated to be the “most watched event in the history of the human race”, describing it as an “epic global holiday” that only comes around every four years, meaning Budweiser has a huge part to play.

“Our job as a premium beer brand is to make an event like this more fun, more celebratory and more social. Our whole campaign is centred around this sense of euphoric energy around the world and our call to action is to light up the FIFA World Cup,” he says.

However, when asked about the geopolitical problems surrounding the host nation, Patricio was quick to shrug off any concern saying Budweiser is purely focuses on uniting people around the world.

READ MORE: The Russia World Cup – A brand risk or unique opportunity? 

And with just a little over a month to go before kickoff, few sponsors have started talking about their plans a true contrast to the event in Brazil when months out from the tournament sponsors were already touting their campaigns, signing up the stars of the game and getting their messages ready for the event.

Perkins says today’s launch was very deliberately planned “and based on our judgement of the current interest in the World Cup and interest in football. We analyse trends and media insights and therefore decided now is the optimal moment to come out with the launch of the campaign”.

Patricio added that Budweiser wanted to make sure it was “more relevant” before launching.

“The World Cup is an opportunity to bring more people together than any other event in the world. It’s a natural beer moment and a natural moment of celebration so it’s our biggest opportunity to do our job,” Perkins concluded.

To keep up to date with what brands are doing around the World Cup follow the Marketing Week blog.

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