Digital ambush was at its all time high after an unfortunate incident when Luis Suarez allegedly bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini which saw Suarez banned for 4 months. Whilst the punishment seems to be very harsh (includes no role to play in football including training with club team and visiting football stadiums) almost alienating the player global brands did not hesitate to make the best of the player’s misery and with no remorse flooded the social networks with free publicity.
What brands said on twitter
“Don’t worry #Suarez, four months is plenty of time to devour House of Cards. One bite at a time,” Netflix tweeted after the suspension was announced,
Don’t worry #Suarez, four months is plenty of time to devour House of Cards. One bite at a time.
— Netflix UK & Ireland (@NetflixUK) June 26, 2014
McDonald’s Uruguay unit tweeted: “Hello @luis16suarez, if you are hungry come have a bite of a big Mac.”
Hola @luis16suarez, si te quedaste con hambre vení a darle un mordisco a una BigMac 😉
— McDonald’s Uruguay (@McDonalds_Uy) June 24, 2014
Puma, the sportswear company that supplies jerseys for the Italian soccer team, jumped on the bandwagon by tweeting an image of the team shirt and the slogan: “Players look damn good in those PUMA shirts. Hard to resist taking a bite.” Surprisingly Puma also kit Uruguay national team.
— PUMA (@PUMA) June 26, 2014
Barilla tweeted an image of eleven pieces of pasta, one of them partially bitten off. Printed on top: “Bentornati A Casa!” (Welcome home).
— Barilla (@Barilla) June 26, 2014
Eataly, a food emporium with outlets both in Italy and abroad, placed a full page advertisement in Friday’s newspapers featuring a New York Post story about the Suarez biting incident which had used the headline “Eataly!”
Paddy Power, the sports betting company who is also notorious for situational based free publicity put up outdoor hoardings of toothless image of Luis Suarez with ‘SORTED’ written as copy for the creative.
How have brands that Suarez endorses reacted to the ban
Meanwhile the brands that really matter, the brands that are directly associated with Luis Suarez have taken a tough stance on him with 888.com an online betting firm has ended their recently signed GBP 1 million endorsement deal.
Adidas has not yet taken a decision on their relationship however they have decided to pull of all world cup based Suarez campaigns off and Beats headphones are also to decide weather Suarez should be out of the Game before the game campaign which ironically is also a big ambush campaign getting world cup sponsors SONY to pressurize FIFA to ban players using Beats headphones during the cup.