Marketing | 05 MIN READ

Display advertising insights: FIFA World Cup 2018

Display advertising insights for the 2018 FIFA World Cup have the potential to prove fascinating. Here at Bannerflowwe will be reviewing the impact of the World Cup on display advertising using our unrivalled banner data. Over the next month we intend to explain just what we discover and what it means for the industry.

Already trends such as the growth of mobile display look set to prosper. While, being able to put the right message, at the right time, in front of the right viewer, will be more important than ever.

The sheer number of impressions could be astronomical too! What’s more, some brands now have technology, such as creative management platforms, to make the huge quantities of messages required for this extraordinary opportunity. (While others will not…)

Why is the World Cup so important for display advertising?

June 14th marks the start of a month-long sports bonanza where the winners achieve both brand recognition and numerous conversion opportunities. It’s going to be fiercely competitive with advertisers, across all industries fighting for viewers.    

The World Cup is huge for brands, both local and worldwide. Global advertising spend is set to grow by 5.2% to $535bn in 2018 thanks – in part – to the football World Cup. Having the best creative, and most effective campaign strategy is going to be crucial.

Plus, unlike the Winter Olympics of 2018, the World Cup is a truly global event and captures the imagination of the entire world. It’s unlike any other one sport tournament, and only comparable to the multi event Summer Olympics.    

It’s a time for battles and bold experiments

There are perennial battles to be fought. With super brands, like Adidas and Nike launching full-scale, cross-channel assaults on viewers for supremacy. The victor claiming potentially the most valuable branding prize in sports marketing (and bruising the other’s ego in the process!) Read more on that fight here

It’s also a time when advertisers become inventive. For example, display advertising this summer has the potential to see data feeds and dynamic banners used in numbers never before realised. Plus, staying relevant with of the moment messaging is going to be more important than ever. While, for others, simply producing the most ads, across devices, and across channels will be key.

Display advertising insights and theories for the World Cup

With the World Cup only hours away, we sat down with Bannerflow’s two resident data crunchers, Product Owner Björn Karlström, and Developer Victor Blomqvist, to find out how they think display advertising will perform during the World Cup. Plus, a few predictions as to why!

How do you think the World Cup might affect mobile display advertising?

Victor Blomqvist:  I expect much more mobile traffic than normal.

Björn Karlström: Definitely an increase in mobile traffic. But probably an increase in display inventory as a whole, since the World Cup news and games will be consumed across all platforms.

What are your reasons for this prediction?

VB: People are outside, at friends or in a bar – away from a screen but they have their phones. Also, its common to sit with a phone or tablet while watching TV, to get commentary, browse news, and so on. On top of this a mobile is available while working in the office 🙂 .

BK: What he said!

Which banner sizes do you think will be the most popular?

VB: Mobile square formats, like: 320×320, or 300×250.

BK: It’s likely we’ll see the biggest changes in terms of percentage for the pure mobile formats like 320×50, 320×480, and 320×320. But in terms of increase in impressions I think the desktop giant 300×250 will prevail. Even though the classic formats will increase most in number of impressions, this is a good opportunity to go for less popular formats. The competition will be lower and might help lower your average CPM too.  

How might impressions change during the World Cup?

VB: An increase in impressions for iGaming and entertainment. Especially iGaming.

BK: I think there will be a more general increase in impressions at the beginning of the tournament since there are several games each day. However, further into the tournament I think it’s likely we will see bigger spikes in impressions since more countries are focusing on fewer and bigger games.

Any interesting display advertising theories or thoughts?

BK: Ha! A not-too-bold guess is that games including Brazil, Spain, France, England, and Germany might have more “non-native” fans which could result in impression spikes. Yet these still might still be drained in the general world cup fever!

It’ll also be interesting to see how countries with less mobile internet user penetration like Russia and Brazil will be affected. Especially when compared with counties that have higher penetration like England or Spain.

Plus, it’ll be fascinating to see how display will be affected in big countries that didn’t qualify. Countries like Italy and the USA (which is the second largest country in terms of ticket purchases).

How do you think the World Cup will affect display advertising overall?

VB: In general, I think there will more quality banners tailored to World Cup, and more “special” solutions. Such as a full screen intro banner when entering a page (an interstitial format). Betsson runs one on Aftonblandet at the moment.

BK: I agree with Victor; most advertisers will focus on the World Cup, so it will be harder to stand out. You not only risk being confused with competitors in your own industry, but everyone will be fighting for the same attention. Advertisers will need to go the extra mile to grab viewer attention.   

To be continued…

Yes, that’s all for now but fear not we shall return in a little over a month’s time.

Not only will we know the winner of the tournament, but we’ll know a fair few things about how display advertising performed during the month too.

We’ll also find out whether Victor and Björn’s predictions were correct and if Sweden manages to make it out of the group stage…unlikely, I know.

In the meantime, check-out our blog on the best World Cup advertising campaigns of all time.  Or – if you prefer – sit back and enjoy the football, while finding out more about Bannerflow’s creative management platform on a mobile device of your choice.




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