• 2 min read

UEFA EURO 2024: From the Sidelines to the Spotlight!

group of Sky Blue football team fans cheer and celebrating a winning tournament or winning league in stadium. the fans wearing sky blue shirt . Generative AI

As the Euros draws billions of fans worldwide, businesses are unsurprisingly eager to capitalise on the extensive coverage, as a possible way to leverage the visibility of their own brand. Whilst official partners like Adidas, Lidl, and Coca-Cola Zero will have obtained authorised marketing rights, other businesses may still seek to gain exposure through innovative tactics, known as ambush marketing.

Ambush marketing is a marketing strategy in which an advertiser “ambushes” an event to compete for exposure against other advertisers; it can be a powerful and strategic tool for businesses, but the ramifications of missteps can be severe (legally, financially and reputationally) and can potentially have a negative impact on the event’s organisation and official sponsors. However, by proactively addressing potential risks, businesses can effectively navigate this terrain, reaping the benefits, whilst safeguarding their interests and reputation.

Specsavers has this year, revealed a cleverly adapted rebadge of its well-known slogan ‘Should’ve gone to Specsavers’ into the languages of all the nations participating in the current Euros, and we all remember the 36 women, disguised as fans, simultaneously revealing bright orange mini-dresses, allegedly associated with Bavaria Brewery during the FIFA 2010 World Cup. Or Paddy Power’s billboard campaign that mocked the strict Olympic branding rules: ‘Official Sponsor of the Largest Athletics Event in London This Year! There you go, we said it.’ which further clarified that the sponsorship was in fact of an egg and spoon race in the town of London in France.

Whilst ambush marketing might appear to be a bit of a fun way to raise branding profile for a significantly reduced cost, businesses should always be aware of the risk of possible IP infringement or unfair competition.

Our intellectual property team has extensive experience advising organizations on IP protection and compliance. To speak with one of our experts, call us at 0800 2800 421.

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