SBD/June 25, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

Showing Their Teeth: Brands Quickly Capitalize On Suarez' Bite Via Social Media

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Snickers wasted no time in getting up an ad playing off of Suarez' alleged chomp
Uruguay F Luis Suarez yesterday appeared to bite Italy D Giorgio Chiellini during the teams' FIFA World Cup match, and several brands "won the moment with real-time tweets" about the incident, according to Lauren Johnson of ADWEEK. Bud Light and Listerine "quickly bought Promoted Tweets around the #Suarez hashtag, with the beer brand playfully utilizing a picture of a bitten-into bottle." Listerine, which set up a "social newsroom before the Cup began for these types of marketing opportunities," wrote, "We recommend a good swish after grabbing a bite of Italian." Other brands "cleverly tweeting thanks to Suarez's actions" include Trident, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Snickers, Whataburger and MLB (ADWEEK.com, 6/24). In London, Christopher Hooton notes the Twitter account for the Uruguay division of McDonald's "suggested Suarez sink a Big Mac to pre-empt any mid-match hunger" (London INDEPENDENT, 6/25).

WILL SPONSORS LEAVE SUAREZ? The FINANCIAL TIMES' Roger Blitz reports Suarez is feeling the "wrath of his sponsors" following yesterday's incident. Online gambling company 888 Poker indicated it was "seriously reviewing its relationship" despite just signing Suarez two months ago. adidas is waiting until FIFA releases the finding of its disciplinary hearing into the incident, and said "then we will see" about the future of the relationship. Blitz notes the apparel company last year "warned Suarez about his conduct" after biting Chelsea D Branislav Ivanovic in an EPL match. Suarez also bit an opponent in '10 while playing for Dutch club Ajax (FT.com, 6/25).
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