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Adidas is the World Cup's Advertising King
Reuters, June 25th, 2006 5:30PM

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Adidas is setting records this year at the World Cup. Senior executives have said sales are surging beyond a billion euros and beyond expectations, as the World Cup has created a spending bonanza across Europe. The company attributes much of its success to its global marketing efforts; in fact, Adidas this year was given the advertiser of the year award at the 53rd International Advertising Festival in Cannes. Uli Becker, the head of global brand marketing, said its success stems from 2003, when the company unified its sports marketing efforts under the "Impossible is Nothing" campaign, which featured top athletes from several sports across the globe, including David Beckham. This year, Adidas' Jose +10 campaign has been all over the World Cup. The spot shows two young boys picking teams for a game of pick-up that includes many of soccer's biggest stars both past and present, like Zinedine Zidane, Beckham, Michel Platini and Franz Beckenbauer. Meanwhile, Adidas' top soccer competitor, Nike, launched a more interactive campaign called "Joga Bonito," featuring Eric Cantona and Ronaldinho, but its campaign focuses heavily on a social networking Web site hosted and developed by Google, where soccer fans can share videos, chat, and create their own blogs. Many ad agencies have commented that the Nike campaign is more innovative and would likely produce a broader reach than Adidas. Apparently, they were wrong, according to this award show, one of many in the industry.

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