With a Native Advertising Strategy, You Too Can Win the FIFA World Cup

On 31/05/2018 by Araceli Almada

With the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia only a few weeks away, advertisers and publishers are looking to reap its opportunities. Advertisers are rushing to gain significant exposure and amplify engagement, reach, and meaningful interaction with football fans, while publishers sense the opportunity to optimize revenues. In this context, the World Cup represents a global and landmark event for everybody involved in the digital media industry. 

In the same manner that the FIFA World Cup brings together the top level of competition, it brings all digital players competing for the public’s attention. It is a challenge for advertisers to stand out from the pack and showcase a compelling story to get fans engaged. It is a challenge for publishers to make the most of the World Cup experience and maximize returns on campaigns. However, we have the game plan for you to optimize accordingly, and that game plan is native advertising!  

A Tale of Two Halves: Capturing Attention from the Clutter  

First, let’s explain why native advertising is so effective for initiating that conversation between brands and people during the World Cup. It starts with knowing your audience and their consumption preferences. Native advertising enables advertisers to target the right audience and get them engaged in an interactive, emotive, and genuine way - as we always say, it is all about the story. Secondly, half of the world’s population watches this landmark event, and at least 25% of World Cup fans are expected to turn to digital channels to consume the event. 

These digital channels make it enticing for digital ad spending, which as we well know, surpassed television advertising back in 2016 and continues to outpace all other mediums. These digital channels entail video, display, social, on mobile and desktop - it is an immense opportunity to interact online. Given the level of competition, starting a conversation with your audience must be done by capturing their attention from the clutter that proliferates across the media. 

Therefore, to make good use of people’s viewing experiences, both content and distribution are key if you are to be seen and heard. Content must be contextual, yet content must also be integrated into the channels where consumers are likely to engage with it. 

And like any World Cup match, native advertising is a tale of two halves to get the results you desire.

First Half: Contextual Content

Native advertising is a strategy where you play to win. You have to play fast, you have to play smart, and so, you have to produce and syndicate your content. In the first place, your content must be entertaining, insightful, and compelling enough for readers to be interested and want to engage with it. It should not be a nuisance to their online experience, but rather, a relevance. Hence, your message must be personalized so the user feels a connection and finds a reason to pay attention and take action. 

Still unsure how this first half of native advertising plays into targeting a World Cup audience? Just take a look at the previous 2014 World Cup watchers, who said in an international survey that they were more likely to pay attention to ads that were fun, entertaining, and personalized. These are the elements they look for as a reason to engage, so that is the first key step to understand if you want to reach your audience. While people are focused on the action during the game, there is ample opportunity for brands to get noticed before, between, and after the match. Without these ‘native’ elements at the forefront of your content strategy, you won’t be relevant in the mind of your audience, and thus, as a consequence of misunderstanding the dynamic of contextual content, you likely won’t be the winner of their attention. 

Second Half: Effective Distribution

With compelling native content, you are halfway there. You may have the upperhand with great content, but as we know in the world of sports, it takes more than skill to win. Talent can only get you so far, so tactics matter too if you are to stay ahead and win at the end. Concerning tactics, it’s about finding those open spots in order to move forward and find the best opportunity to score that meaningful goal that seals your victory. Your branded content is that individual skill, but now you have to effectively distribute that content to set yourself up for success. You can’t rely on a single player - or publisher - to get you there, and likewise, native advertising allows you to work those channels. It is the essence of what it means to scale; rather than distribute your content in the ‘tiki taka’ style - distributing one by one and essentially staying in no-man’s land all day - you should find the direct and more cost-effective approach. 

When your content is relevant, it is easier to stretch your game to the other end of the field. In saying so, native content enables you to maximize your output because it is more meaningful, engaging, and compelling for audiences to view, and as a result, more influencers - publishers - will be willing to syndicate that content. More influencers, in the end, means reaching a larger pool of your target customers. And optimizing your target reach means better business opportunities for everyone.

Native for the Win

Native advertising at scale is the answer, and native advertising networks, like Ligatus, help intermediate between high-quality advertisers and publishers so that great results are achieved in the end. Best of all, our high-quality ad network guarantees your brand’s safety and reputation. You won’t be exposed on the back-end by moving forward or be susceptible to counter attacks, because a native approach always puts the ball into the back of the net.  

The FIFA World Cup audience is huge, and that represents great opportunity. But it is a different matter in knowing how to take advantage of it. Understanding the flow of World Cup consumption and active content engagement helps marketers integrate marketing campaigns effectively across platforms and devices, and how best to tailor creative messaging to that particular moment. If you understand what your audience wants and know where to reach them, then you will be successful in monetizing that viewing experience. 

What are you waiting for to win? Contact us today to find out how you too can be a champion in the World Cup this summer.