|Source: FIFA's Guidelines for the use of|
FIFA's Official Marks, November 2016.
That's not to say marketers' hands are tied. In the Fair Play section of its pages on brand protection FIFA states: "As the organiser of the event, FIFA holds all commercial rights to the FIFA World Cup, its greatest commercial asset.
"However, FIFA recognises that football is a worldwide passion and of course FIFA is not opposed to businesses benefitting from the thriving economy surrounding the FIFA World Cup by using generic references to football. FIFA even encourages shop owners to join in with the celebration by decorating their shop windows and facades with generic football terms and objects."
Here are some examples of what some companies have done in their marketing campaigns about the 2018 World Cup. WorkSmart Asia presents the pictures 'as is' and does not comment on their legality. Some brands are perfectly entitled to use FIFA's official marks as they are official sponsors of the event:
|China Mengniu Dairy Company's marketing campaign as a 2018 FIFA World Cup Official Sponsor includes signage that its products are "Naturally Good" and "Naturally Strong", together with an image of a football player in a stadium.|
|100Plus is offering a limited edition 100Plus soccer ball in a colour reminiscent of a trophy with a minimum purchase of S$18.|
|FairPrice and Pacific West are going with FOODball Fever and a prize of a trip to "your favourite football country".|
|A tray of World Cup dirty buns depicting flags picked out in powder at Food&HotelAsia 2018. There was a demonstration of how the dirty buns were decorated. The buns are so called as they are messy to eat.|
|Signage for the World Cup dirty buns.|
|Pringles often changes its packaging for seasonal reasons. Its original potato chips now have a football focal point, while the sour cream and onion flavour have the same football, but in green.|
|The full Pringles display includes the message "Make football more fun." Taken 11 May.|
|Singtel outlet with pictures of footballers and the slogan Free your Passion with Singtel. Taken at Jurong Point on 13 May.|
|Coca-Cola has labelled some of its bottles with what looks like a football if negative space is considered, together with the three-letter abbreviations for various countries. Portugal, France, Spain and Argentina are represented here; all are World Cup finalists. Taken at Paya Lebar Square on 13 May.|
|A whole pavilion for Coca Cola at NTUC Xtra, Jurong Point. Taken 3 June.|
|World Cup signage for Coca-Cola on the shelves. Taken June 1.|
|Score goals with Milo - there are limited edition autographed football collectibles to be won every week. This is a Kopitiam initiative. Taken 1 June.|
|Flags on toothpicks illustrate Marina Mandarin Singapore's World Cup Craze promotion, which offers a beverage and snacks plus live telecasts of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia at the Atrium Lounge.|
|Maggi Hot Cup instant noodles come with the Russian word gol (гол, goal) decorated with a football, and the word Russia below that. Taken 29 May.|
|Win2 added a sleeve on top of its potato crisp crackers for a promotion titled Football Fever. Taken 3 June.|
|Taste the Soccer Fever! with Cadbury. Taken 3 June.|
|Cadbury's soccer promotion. Taken 3 June.|
|Giordano brings back Bear on Bike, or Bob, in country colours. Signage features the BoB cutout composed of different flags, riding a bicycle whose wheels sport a football pattern. Taken 6 June.|
|Keppel Electric is recruiting customers with a Dell gaming laptop as an incentive and a headline addressed to football fanatics. Taken 1 June.|
|Clear anti-dandruff shampoo has limited edition packaging with a football themed logo and the names of various countries on each bottle. Taken 1 June.|
|M & S display with an image of a football and bunting representing the flags of different countries, taken 21 June. There are no words, just chips and alcohol.|
Read the guidelines on FIFA's official marks, dated November 2016 (PDF)
Watch AirAsiaGo's Eid video, where the Friendship Cup wars with the Family Cup when Eid falls during the World Cup.
Digi has also got an Eid story with a football theme.
What happened in the previous World Cup in 2014? A version of this blog post appeared in defunct sister blog WorkSmart SG in 2014:
When FIFA has public guidelines for the use of its marks, how do non-sponsors speak the World Cup language and touch their customers who are also fans?
Some phrases are out of the question. Protected terms include
• 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil
• 2014 FIFA World Cup
• FIFA World Cup
• World Cup
• 2014 World Cup
• World Cup 2014
• Brazil 2014
• 2014 Brazil
• Football World Cup
• Soccer World Cup
among others, and there are still others which are not listed, says FIFA in the document.
Here are some ways companies have implemented World Cup campaigns in Singapore. A picture of a football helps, plus game-related language. Some brands have gone further with colours related to Brazil, or with football celebrities.
This bus ad from bank POSB, found in Jurong, is about a campaign to get account holders to upgrade to smart chip debit cards. It says: "Your soccer kaki has upgraded. Have you?"
|Brand's has a campaign on in Dhoby Ghaut MRT station where the company invites fans to "Game On with Brand's: drink & win this football season". The 'O' for 'on' is in the shape of a football.|
Source: KFC website. KFC enlisted football celebrity Ronaldo for its World Cup campaign. There is no reference to the World Cup, just Ronaldo's picture and signature, pictures of themed food, and the legend "Share the taste; share the passion. Cristiano Ronaldo."
*Images may be added as and when they are spotted.