We can pretty much guarantee you’ve seen or heard about this one, which basically means either a massive own-goal or a screamer straight into the top corner!
Paddy Power is no stranger to both outcomes, with a long history of risky stunts and marketing campaigns that have caused endless controversy. This time it’s pulled off an absolute belter with its “Save Our Shirt” campaign.
The Campaign Timeline
With more twists and turns than a helter-skelter, Paddy Power kicked off the campaign with a brilliant announcement video telling everyone a kit sponsorship was coming.
We’ve decided to take the plunge and sponsor @htafcdotcom. All we need now are a few ideas to make the most of it… pic.twitter.com/X3yITdFJds
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) July 15, 2019
They then revealed the “final design” for Huddersfield’s 2019/20 season;
⚽️ Here’s the new home kit that #htafc will wear in this evening’s pre-season game against @officiallydale.
🛒 The kit goes on sale at @htafcmegastore this coming Saturday, 20 July 2019. pic.twitter.com/VZA2OKoXMl
— Huddersfield Town (@htafc) July 17, 2019
The design received more than a little backlash, sent Huddersfield fans into meltdown as the rest of the country laughed at the monstrosity of a kit they were presented with and got everyone speculating about the legitimacy. Basically, it got the whole footballing world talking!
In what appeared to be the final twist to this expertly constructed campaign, Paddy Power revealed the real reason behind the whole affair. Its campaign to “Save Our Shirt” – calling for the end of shirt sponsorship for the sake of the fans.
So yeah, our Huddersfield shirt WAS a fake. We’re not just sponsoring them this season, we’re UNsponsoring them too, through our Save Our Shirt campaign. #SaveOurShirt pic.twitter.com/5Q5XjQ9U2U
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) July 19, 2019
However, it didn’t end there! Paddy Power continued to recruit willing participants to the campaign including Motherwell, Newport County and Southend United. As they do more news stories are written, more brand awareness for Paddy Power, more links on high ranking sites and more beautiful looking kits unspoilt by automotive companies, airlines and gambling sites (which make up a staggering 50% of all shirt sponsors for the 2019/20 season).
Oh! and they threw in a little CSR element to the campaign as well, auctioning off the famous shirts and donating the money to charitable causes.
👏 @eBay_UK have agreed to waive the selling fees on the @paddypower shirts, meaning all of the money will directly benefit the three chosen charities!
🕑 Auctions end TOMORROW at 8pm so move quickly if you want one of these rare shirts!#SaveOurShirt #htafc
— Huddersfield Town (@htafc) July 25, 2019
It has landed the Championship club in a little bit of hot water however, as the FA has now charged them with misconduct, and they have until the end of this week to respond. Great to see the FA have a sense of humour 😒!
The different campaign elements receive over 2.5m video views across social media and counting, coverage was received across the world in major newspapers, on TV and Radio and on high-ranking online news and sport outlets as well as being covered my pretty much every marketing title in the country, as well as this little old blog! Even the FA charging Huddersfield has created more conversation around it – more attention for a campaign which is so on-brand for PP!
We think it was absolutely genius – a campaign that was well thought out, clever and extremely well delivered. Sometimes you just have to stand and applaud – well done Paddy Power!