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Ambush Marketing at the World Cup
By: Cindy Wendland
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Brand image, brand personality, brand voice. Not every brand wants to be “good.” Some appeal more to their customer base by being “bad,” being rebellious. It’s part of what makes the brand cool and the product appealing. Beats by Dre is one such rebel brand and being thrown out of the world cup by FIFA showed just how bad they are.

The World Cup has some big sponsors — Adidas, Coca-Cola, and Sony, among others. Beats provided headsets to some of the athletes, but since they were not an official sponsor, they were banned from the games. Players are not allowed to wear Beats headphones during official matches and media events. Beats being banned from the World Cup just feeds into their image. 

Beat’s slogan is solid. It shows athletes saying, “Without music, my preparation is not complete.” Athletes and competitive people will go to any length to have an edge. If Beats' customer base believes the edge is music delivered through cool, edgy, high-performance headphones, then Beats will do well to be a renegade. Ambush marketing and other actions that support that image strengthen their brand and add to their personality. Sometimes being bad is good for the brand’s bottom line.

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About the Author
Cindy Wendland has a background in marketing and finance. She is the creative director for an online men's health magazine, BrainBrawnBody.com, and she gets to write their leisure/travel blog. She is also a web designer helping her clients with online community engagement, websitesbywendland.com. Prior to her web years, she worked in pharmacy consulting.
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