Hatch Communications
Hatch Communications
Hatch Communications

Thought Leadership

How F&B Brands Can Capitalise on a Huge Summer of Sport

by Cameron Trevena

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There’s nothing quite like a British summer – getting the shorts out way too early and completely collapsing as a nation as soon as it gets above 25°C. Despite our woeful lack of air conditioning, it’s still something us Brits look forward to every year.

The summer of 2024 is shaping up to be a thrilling one for sports fans, with a stacked lineup of major sporting events, including the UEFA Euros 2024, the Paris Olympics, and Wimbledon all on the horizon. For food and beverage (F&B) brands, these events offer a golden opportunity to engage with a broad audience and drive sales. According to official data from the ONS, retail food and drink sales rose by 4.2% during the last Euros. With England favourites for the Euros this year, the excitement is palpable and the potential for F&B brands to tap into this is immense.

EURO 2024 specifically represents a significant return to normality following the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to major football events. The postponement and lockdown restrictions of Euros 2020 (held in 2021) and the winter scheduling of the Qatar World Cup 2022 meant fans have missed out on the traditional summer tournament experience over recent years. Now, with a major event in the summer sun, fans are eager to gather and celebrate, creating a perfect storm for F&B brands to capitalise through both on- and off-trade channels. Notably, the evergreen pub garden occasion will be huge for on-premise engagement, and the growing home bar and ‘Big Night In’ trends will be crucial for brands focusing on retail.

So, how can F&B brands capitalise on the summer of sport? Here’s our top tips.

Strategies for F&B brands

  1. Embrace Cultural Relevance 🙏

Use culturally relevant humour, memes, and themes that resonate with sports fans. Incorporating popular cultural references and timely jokes can make campaigns more relatable and shareable. This approach helps in building a connection with the audience and enhances brand recall.

  1. Leverage Key Moments 🗓

Target marketing efforts during peak engagement times, such as the build-up to a game when consumers are getting the party food shop in or during halftime breaks when consumers go for a snack break. These moments are when fans are most attentive and likely to make spontaneous purchase decisions.

  1. Highlight Community and Shared Experiences 👥

Promote the communal aspect of sports, encouraging gatherings and shared viewing experiences. Whether it’s through watch parties, themed events in pubs and beer gardens, or promoting home gatherings with family and friends, emphasising the social nature of sports can enhance consumer engagement and loyalty.

  1. Collaborate with Celebrities 🤩

Partner with well-known sports personalities to add credibility and excitement to campaigns. Celebrities can draw attention and lend authenticity to your brand, making your promotions more impactful. Using athletes or popular sports figures provides star power and can create a stronger emotional connection with the audience.

  1. Utilise Multi-Channel Campaigns 🤳

Spread your message across various platforms to reach a wider audience and maintain consistent engagement. Use a mix of press office, social media, and live event sponsorships to ensure your brand is visible at all touchpoints. This multi-faceted approach helps in maximising reach and driving consistent consumer interaction.

 

Campaign examples

Let’s look back at some examples that got it right from previous years.

  1. Just Eat Takeaway’s Euros 2020 Campaign

For the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament, Just Eat Takeaway executed a masterful campaign by leveraging its global sponsorship. They launched entertaining, celebrity-packed videos and dynamic creative content across all major social platforms.

A highlight was the UK campaign featuring football legend Eric Cantona, who delivered humorous, motivational speeches to hype up the nation before big matches. Playing into Cantona’s reputation as a philosophical thinker, it features over-the-top football and takeaway-themed lines.

A critical lesson from Just Eat’s campaign is understanding when their audience is most engaged. Pushing messages during the halftime break, when viewers are likely thinking about food, perfectly aligned with their service offering and maximised engagement.

 

  1. Deliveroo’s “England Til We Dine” Campaign

Another food delivery brand, Deliveroo also did a campaign for the last years, titled “England Til We Dine”. Celebrating their official sponsorship of the England teams, the ad, voiced by Karl Pilkington, cleverly played on the dual identity of English fans who cheer for their national team but love a diverse range of international foods.

Featuring football stars like Harry Maguire and Jack Grealish, the campaign humorously highlighted how English fans switch their allegiance to various cuisines when ordering takeaways.

This campaign’s success lay in its cultural relevance and humour, resonating with the audience’s love for both football and food, thereby driving engagement and orders.

 

  1. Budweiser Brewing Group’s ‘Perfect Serve’ Campaign

Budweiser Brewing Group (BBG) launched a campaign titled ‘Perfect Serve’ aimed at driving footfall and increasing dwell time in the on-trade around Wimbledon. Inviting consumers to rate the quality of their pint of Stella Artois or Stella Artois Unfiltered to receive cashback on the full price of their pint, this approach focused on driving footfall and rewarding publicans for serving the ‘perfect pint’.

Running from March 1 across more than 2,000 venues, the campaign includes additional incentives such as entry into a prize draw for Wimbledon tickets. BBG will also ensure continued excellent serve quality by refreshing tap lines, using targeted ads, and providing training to pub staff on the perfect serve ritual.

A pint of Stella Artois with a football pitch

Credit: Marketing Beat

This comprehensive approach aims to boost dwell time and repeat visits to pubs, enhancing customer experience and loyalty.

By implementing these strategies, F&B brands can effectively tap into the excitement of the summer’s sporting events, driving both brand engagement and sales. The summer of 2024 is set to be a memorable one, and with the right approach, F&B brands can ensure they are part of the celebration.

Get in touch to find out how we can maximise the sports-filled summer of 2024 for your brand hello@hatch.group.

There’s nothing quite like a British summer – getting the shorts out way too early and completely collapsing as a nation as soon as it gets above 25°C. Despite our woeful lack of air conditioning, it’s still something us Brits look forward to every year.

The summer of 2024 is shaping up to be a thrilling one for sports fans, with a stacked lineup of major sporting events, including the UEFA Euros 2024, the Paris Olympics, and Wimbledon all on the horizon. For food and beverage (F&B) brands, these events offer a golden opportunity to engage with a broad audience and drive sales. According to official data from the ONS, retail food and drink sales rose by 4.2% during the last Euros. With England favourites for the Euros this year, the excitement is palpable and the potential for F&B brands to tap into this is immense.

EURO 2024 specifically represents a significant return to normality following the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to major football events. The postponement and lockdown restrictions of Euros 2020 (held in 2021) and the winter scheduling of the Qatar World Cup 2022 meant fans have missed out on the traditional summer tournament experience over recent years. Now, with a major event in the summer sun, fans are eager to gather and celebrate, creating a perfect storm for F&B brands to capitalise through both on- and off-trade channels. Notably, the evergreen pub garden occasion will be huge for on-premise engagement, and the growing home bar and ‘Big Night In’ trends will be crucial for brands focusing on retail.

So, how can F&B brands capitalise on the summer of sport? Here’s our top tips.

Strategies for F&B brands

  1. Embrace Cultural Relevance 🙏

Use culturally relevant humour, memes, and themes that resonate with sports fans. Incorporating popular cultural references and timely jokes can make campaigns more relatable and shareable. This approach helps in building a connection with the audience and enhances brand recall.

  1. Leverage Key Moments 🗓

Target marketing efforts during peak engagement times, such as the build-up to a game when consumers are getting the party food shop in or during halftime breaks when consumers go for a snack break. These moments are when fans are most attentive and likely to make spontaneous purchase decisions.

  1. Highlight Community and Shared Experiences 👥

Promote the communal aspect of sports, encouraging gatherings and shared viewing experiences. Whether it’s through watch parties, themed events in pubs and beer gardens, or promoting home gatherings with family and friends, emphasising the social nature of sports can enhance consumer engagement and loyalty.

  1. Collaborate with Celebrities 🤩

Partner with well-known sports personalities to add credibility and excitement to campaigns. Celebrities can draw attention and lend authenticity to your brand, making your promotions more impactful. Using athletes or popular sports figures provides star power and can create a stronger emotional connection with the audience.

  1. Utilise Multi-Channel Campaigns 🤳

Spread your message across various platforms to reach a wider audience and maintain consistent engagement. Use a mix of press office, social media, and live event sponsorships to ensure your brand is visible at all touchpoints. This multi-faceted approach helps in maximising reach and driving consistent consumer interaction.

 

Campaign examples

Let’s look back at some examples that got it right from previous years.

  1. Just Eat Takeaway’s Euros 2020 Campaign

For the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament, Just Eat Takeaway executed a masterful campaign by leveraging its global sponsorship. They launched entertaining, celebrity-packed videos and dynamic creative content across all major social platforms.

A highlight was the UK campaign featuring football legend Eric Cantona, who delivered humorous, motivational speeches to hype up the nation before big matches. Playing into Cantona’s reputation as a philosophical thinker, it features over-the-top football and takeaway-themed lines.

A critical lesson from Just Eat’s campaign is understanding when their audience is most engaged. Pushing messages during the halftime break, when viewers are likely thinking about food, perfectly aligned with their service offering and maximised engagement.

 

  1. Deliveroo’s “England Til We Dine” Campaign

Another food delivery brand, Deliveroo also did a campaign for the last years, titled “England Til We Dine”. Celebrating their official sponsorship of the England teams, the ad, voiced by Karl Pilkington, cleverly played on the dual identity of English fans who cheer for their national team but love a diverse range of international foods.

Featuring football stars like Harry Maguire and Jack Grealish, the campaign humorously highlighted how English fans switch their allegiance to various cuisines when ordering takeaways.

This campaign’s success lay in its cultural relevance and humour, resonating with the audience’s love for both football and food, thereby driving engagement and orders.

 

  1. Budweiser Brewing Group’s ‘Perfect Serve’ Campaign

Budweiser Brewing Group (BBG) launched a campaign titled ‘Perfect Serve’ aimed at driving footfall and increasing dwell time in the on-trade around Wimbledon. Inviting consumers to rate the quality of their pint of Stella Artois or Stella Artois Unfiltered to receive cashback on the full price of their pint, this approach focused on driving footfall and rewarding publicans for serving the ‘perfect pint’.

Running from March 1 across more than 2,000 venues, the campaign includes additional incentives such as entry into a prize draw for Wimbledon tickets. BBG will also ensure continued excellent serve quality by refreshing tap lines, using targeted ads, and providing training to pub staff on the perfect serve ritual.

A pint of Stella Artois with a football pitch

Credit: Marketing Beat

This comprehensive approach aims to boost dwell time and repeat visits to pubs, enhancing customer experience and loyalty.

By implementing these strategies, F&B brands can effectively tap into the excitement of the summer’s sporting events, driving both brand engagement and sales. The summer of 2024 is set to be a memorable one, and with the right approach, F&B brands can ensure they are part of the celebration.

Get in touch to find out how we can maximise the sports-filled summer of 2024 for your brand hello@hatch.group.

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