I’m not exactly what you’d call a football fan but I’m sort of looking forward to the Big Event that is the 2010 World Cup – but only in order to see what brands do to reach out to people like me who really can’t get excited about 11 men (is it eleven?) running up and down a field for ages chasing a ball.
Non-stop chick flicks on Film4 during matches? Guaranteed football-free sections of the newspaper? Dining discounts if you book your table for kick off time? A facebook support group for World Cup Widows?
All this Football fever reminds me of my previous employer, whose MD was football mad and in the name of PR turfed out his office and installed a set of goalposts (World Cup, Japan, 2002), built a beach in the office café (Euro 2004, Portugal, we were getting sand out of the carpets for weeks afterwards) and a German boozer in the boardroom (World Cup, Germany, 2006).
The beach stunt certainly provided me with some stand out memories, like when two national TV news crews ended up having a massive row on the stairs about whose turn it was to film where, having to hide in a corner to avoid being interviewed and thus revealing my total apathy towards the whole thing and the ‘all users’ email that went round asking if any of the girls would be photographed in a bikini on the ‘beach’ for A Major Tabloid. Amazingly, there were no takers…