How closely should a brand’s values align with an event they’re sponsoring?
With an audience of viewers in over 200 countries, the World Cup is rivaled only by the Olympics in terms of its global reach, which is why FIFA recently came under fire from the World Cancer Research Fund for its choice of sponsorship at this year’s event. While the World Cup is a celebration of friendly competition and athletic prowess, its current lineup of partners – McDonald’s, Coca-Cola and Budweiser – appear to be a representation of something else entirely. Critics have cited the inherent unhealthiness of these brands as a missed opportunity to promote healthier lifestyle choices on the world stage at a time when problems like childhood obesity and food-related illnesses such as diabetes are spiraling out of control.
This very public criticism, raises the bigger questions of how much advertising actually influences our consumer choices and at what standard we should hold brands accountable? While it might be too late to reverse course, rather than be combative, FIFA and its sponsors can view this dressing down as a challenge to head in a different direction now and in the future. The result being a better situation for everyone involved.
[via BBC News]