2014 World Cup Brand Watch: Newsjacking the Suarez Bite and England's Loss Is Tough for Sponsors, Too Live

By Stephen M Zorio

Newsjacking Leaves Its Mark

When Luis Suarez bit Italy's Giorgio Chiellini in their World Cup match, fans flocked to social media to mock him. However, they weren't alone in that. Numerous brands and companies, ranging from Snickers to dental offices, seized the opportunity to 'newsjack' a headline that had the world's attention. (Speaking of which, ScribbleLive is hosting a newsjacking chat with some experts at 11 AM June 26 -- join us!)

Some of the jokes are more obvious (we're looking at you dentists) while some are bordering on genius. Below we've compiled the best, weirdest and just plain surprising ways companies (and people) tried to sink their teeth (sorry) into a trend.

Twitter roundup:


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Instagram roundup:

If only #Suarez had a #rightbite healthy meal before the game.. #SuarezBite
by rightbite via Instagram
Yamaha утолит твой музыкальный голод @luis16suarez #luissuarez
by yamahamusic via Instagram
by shawarmanji via Instagram
AGAIN #Suarezbite's #worldcup #goonourwebsite #werenice @7sportsnews 7sportsnews.wiix.com/7sportsnews
by 7sportsnews via Instagram
Non aspettare che la fame ti assalga! Elimina le attese e goditi la tua pausa pranzo in totale relax! Ordina subito su www.appeatit.com #suarez #suarezbite #lunchbreak #pausapranzo #appeatit
by appeatit via Instagram
#CrunchEm #butnottheplayers #WorldCup #FIFA2014 #LuisSuarez #Suarez #SuarezBite #MasterChips
by realmasterchips via Instagram

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Whether these efforts will have any appreciable impact on bottom lines is uncertain, but it's clear that newsjacking, when done properly, can position brands to use news to their advantage.

England's Loss Is Nobody's Gain

The chances of the Three Lions achieving significant success at the 2014 World Cup were always a bit slim, but the team's first-round elimination is still painful to a lot of pockets.

The Guardian took a look at people whose bottom line were adversely affected by the poor showing -- and found a lot of the damage is in a specific sector.

"There are thousands of publicans around the country weeping into empty beer glasses," said media commentator Mark Borkowski. "It's the people who benefit from the mood of the nation that are licking their wounds: the myriad who work in hospitality and the big supermarkets with their barbecue promotions. I'm pretty sure there's a warehouse somewhere in Hendon full of cheap plastic hats and inflatable Spitfires that were ready to be rushed out to market stalls around the country."

While some fans are somewhat philosophical about the loss, it stings even worse for the team's major backers. Nike alone is spending more than $40 million a year to be the official kit supplier for England's national teams. Brands like Carlsberg, Lucozade Sport, Mars, McDonald’s, Nike, Nivea Men, Vauxhall and William Hill all lined up to back the team too.

The Carlsberg ad, "The Eternal Optimist" features ex-Arsenal star Ian Wright along with Jeff Stelling and Paddy McGuinness. It has just under 180,000 views presently and that number is not likely to be helped by an early exit by the English squad.
by carlsberguk via YouTube

Further, the continued presence of English players who performed less than optimally is causing a backlash among disappointed fans. Buying ads in blocks on TV means brands run the risk of an association that can become decidedly negative. 


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It's not all bad news all the time, however, as another club sponsor, Marks & Spencer, sold out nearly all of their official team suits before play even started. But surely that initial enthusiasm would have been multiplied by even some small measure of success. The lesson here is a simple one: Relying on one medium for advertising efforts makes it difficult to be nimble when your fortunes change.

ScribbleLive can help you reach your audience on several mediums at the same time ... and all in the comfort of your own site, where you can react to news as needed, now matter how biting it might be. Be sure to follow Engage Magazine on Twitter to learn which brands are winning (and losing) on the world stage.

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