With the Vuvuzela Cup 2010 a distant memory, there is one bunch here in Sydney who have not forgotten how to properly round it up. HOST had spent many a night analysing the Cheat Factor of every game, squad and player. Now they have created, packaged and sent this lovely trophy to the most deserved winner: Mr Luis Suarez. Great way to finish an agency’s internal passion project: “Jogo Cheato Bonito”!
The FCL trophy
A congratulatory letter and some goalie gloves (for those who don’t know why) accompanies the parcel, sent to Suarez’ club Ajax Amsterdam in true Chaser-style. How good would it be to see the delivery recorded! Dear FCLsters, two requests: please put a modified version of the letter up on your facebook page so we can all re-post it on Suarez Cheatbook page. And secondly, this re-purposed Nike of a trophy needs a name!
This FIFA World Cup features the usual array of cheats, drama queens and bog standard klutzes on the field. So it is overdue that someone offers a fantasy league for the ugly masters of cheating: The FCL.
Our friends from across the road, HOST have spared no over time to not only watch all games, but also around 20 people note and analyze with bleary eyes what goes on behind the back of the referees. Not that the guys in black are having a particular successful time anyway.
Firstly, I find agency initiatives like this are a sign of a healthy internal culture – and that builds a good reputation and attracts as well as retains the best talent. They are doing it for fun because they love football and because it deserved to happen.
Secondly, quick, off-the-cuff projects like this (and without a real client) allow you to showcase abilities in strategy, creative, digital, social media… you choose what you want to show off in as core competencies. And apparently with 2 weeks of development time in the case of the FCL you can also prove how agile you are.
An FCL screengrab
Thirdly, you might be lucky like HOST that brands came on board once they’d built it. Skins sportswear because it fits with their brand positioning of Cheat Legal and radio station Triple M because they found it funny and appropriate for their audience.
Without any media budget the word got out through classic PR and blogger outreach – targeted football communities, influential bloggers, the Irish (as major victims of hands-on rule interpretation they were very receptive). The essential integration across platforms (Twitter, Facebook, blog) was important to distribute content, facilitate conversations, and recruit people into the campaign.
FCL on The Spoiler blog
Strategically, there’s an interesting human truth at its core. The World Cup isn’t just about the football – the cheating and (lack of) gamesmanship causes just as much conversation and discussion amongst fans, gets the public involved, and can last long after the goals have gone. How Les Bleus got through to the South Africa and how then Thierry Henry (“Hand of Frog”) and his fellow drama queens managed to implode and eliminate themselves proves more memorable than a lot of game results.
Preliminary results: 33,000 visits, 2,500 people from over 120 countries around the world playing the game, 430 mentions in social media, and some nice coverage form traditional media as well (several radio stations and The Age picked up the story). As they themselves put it: “What could a big global brand (and media budget) have done with this cheeky idea?” Does anyone know of a similar campaign going on right now?
When you rummage through your own past creative work, you occasionally stumble upon something you had forgotten about, yet a piece that still holds some powerful memories. And I mean powerful memories beyond “Oh, that client was a nightmare” or “Remember tracing outlines in those 250 frames?”. This piece was done as a promotion of our experimental design studio skop, as part of the KungFaux DVDs.
I wonder if people that are younger than 30 years and not from East Germany would find the language of the voice over funny. I don’t mean German itself (a hilarious language, I know!) but the style of the official GDR government language. At their time of glory, it was exactly like that. All their economic, technological or cultural achievements were “auf Weltniveau” (“on world-level”). So we thought Skop (being Berlin-based and with 50% of their workers drafted from the former Eastern part) should be delivering “elektronische Unterhaltung auf Weltniveau”. Somehow the clunky pompousness of the German words don’t translate too well into English: “electronic entertainment on world-level” might actually be EA‘s new tag line.
Anyway, I still see my comrade Peter standing in the toilet of our studio, hunched over the in-built microphone of his Powerbook, in order to make the sound extra dodgy. Very little post-production I must confess.
The KungFaux producer Mike Neumann got in touch with us after we had done the “I know where Bruce Lee Lives” remixer. Subsequently I interviewed him on a podcast for Neue Digitale. We also did a short promo movie about said remixer, again for the DVDs, summing up the KungFu mayhem in motion.
KungFaux itself was an early mash-up of game style graphics, urban music and trash-talk dubbing of martial arts movies. I think I might have caught a repeat on ABC2 and on some cable channel here in Australia.
Some of the slang being used by the featured rap artists in them is quite beyond me, we really should have done a translate-the-trailer back then. We could have beaten Host by at least 4 years!!