‘Excitement Engineers’ Seek Nissan UEFA C.L. Synergies

As the World Cup fades into marketers’ memory, activation around this season’s the UEFA Champions League is kicking off and that includes new sponsor Nissan’s campaign, ‘Engineers Of Excitement’, which is led by a series of idents blending elite automotive and football engineering skills.


This global initiative, which spans TV, print, outdoor, digital and brand activation, is built on the creative idea exploring the excitement fuelling and linking the automotive and football worlds.


It blends this big idea into an umbrella, multi-platform brand experience.


Featuring both Barcelona and Spain star Andres Iniesta and PSG captain Thiago Silva, the TV work revolves around linking the auto brand’s innovative engineering with the innovative skills of two of football’s finest.


The campaign, launched during the initial CL group stage, led by a teaser



and a central creative film, plus a set of fun, entertaining TV idents (all also running online) featuring two star brand ambassador ‘player engineers of football’ showing their skills and performing various tests for Nissan’s engineers – each seemingly more impressive than the last.


In total this initial creative wave features six tests: two ‘wind tunnel tests’, two ‘precision tests’, one ‘blindfold test’ and the ‘cone test’ – all aiming to blend stunning skills and innovative engineering.





The core spot, the idents and behind-the-scenes footage are also hosted online on a new Nissan digital platform designed to entertain football fans and to ensure they are able to keep abreast of the latest news and action from the UEFA Champions League as well as offering an insider peak into Nissan’s innovation lab.


This digital hub also operates as an interactive, two-way platform offering fans the chance to vote for the best and most #genius goals from the world’s top club competition.


This tournament-long ‘UEFA Champions League Goal of the Week’ competition



which was announced jointly by Nissan and UEFA earlier in the summer – offers fans a chance to vote and interact with real-time digital visualisations of the competition’s best goals (incentivised by a series of tournament prizes).


The campaign is further supported by print and outdoor executions combining images of the players’ signature skills and the Nissan models with engineered graphic overlays.


Again, the objective behind these ads is to demonstrate how football and automotive share ‘innovative engineering’.


The activation first launched around the 2014 UEFA Super Cup where it also deployed further UEFA activation strands such as its free ticket programme for youth sports groups, competitions offering fans a unique chance to join competing teams in training sessions, running branded vehicle convey tours (with trophies) in and around UEFA match community areas (and local Nissan dealerships), plus a major Fan Zone presence (that includes vehicle demos, interactive driving simulators, augmented reality photo opportunities and competitions incentivised by various CL prizes.)


‘Cars and football. Genius! Nissan’s arrival as UEFA Champions League sponsor was a dream brief for us at United State of Fans\TBWA. It was another chance to demonstrate our understanding of what makes fans tick,’ comments Ben Hartman, ECD of United State of Fans\TBWA.


‘The global platform idea we’ve landed at Nissan has already resulted in work to be proud of. We’re looking forward to continuing and growing the campaign over the coming seasons through digital, activations, dealerships and beyond.’


Created by TBWA, the car company worked in tandem with Amsterdam based agency United States of Fans\TBWA andTBWA/G1 in Paris, while others who worked on the campaign include DigitasLBi France, Smuggler director Henry-Alex Rubin, post by Glassworks and Marshall Street, plus music and sound from Wave Studio and Massive Music.


The worldwide ‘Engineers of Excitement’ initiative principally promotes three innovative Nissan models: Nissan GT-R NISMO (the world’s fastest production car); Nissan LEAF (the world’s best-selling electric car) and Nissan Qashqai.




This is the first work leveraging Nissan’s new UEFA relationship – the car brand has replaced Ford as the official global automotive sponsor of the UEFA Super Cup and UEFA Champions League via a deal that spans the 2014/15 to 2017/18 seasons.


This new UEFA partnership adds to the company’s sponsorship portfolio that already includes the Rio 2016 Olympic & Paralympic Games, the Brazilian, Columbian, GB and Mexican Olympic Teams, the Africa Cup of Nations, NCAA Football, Canadian Football League, the Heisman Trophy (while Iniesta and Silva join other brand ambassadors such as Usain Bolt and Sir Chris Hoy).


‘Partnering with the UEFA Champions League helps give Nissan the platform to highlight our innovation and the excitement that we create with our cars to consumers around the globe,’ says Gareth Dunsmore, General Manager Marketing Communications of Nissan Europe.


‘Just like our engineers, top class footballers are at the peak of their profession and constantly look to innovate and excite on the field and it’s these shared principles that are captured in this campaign.’


The tournament’s new ‘Goal Of the Week’ competition is illustrative of how UEFA is using ‘co-branding’ to try to adapt to evolving its rights structure and exclusive packages to adapt to both sponsors’ need and to the changing consumer expectations and fan desire to engage beyond traditional television and away from live matchdays themselves.


‘Brands are learning that they can increase value through co-branding. It’s now a win-win rather than a zero-sum game,’ says UEFA head of marketing and sponsorship Peter Williams.


UEFA’s approach is to establish a brand framework offering freedom to its partners and enabling the property owner to stay true to its brand.


‘Our partners are an essential part of the promotion of the Champions League brand. The majority of the fans see and engage with our competitions through them, so whether on TV or online, via marketing campaigns or in retail, they are the brand presenters,’ adds Williams.


‘We encourage our partners to use the brand as much as possible. We want them to have flexibility to use the rights creatively to help them realize their goals.’




Nissan ‘Engineers Of Excitement’ Website



Nissan UEFA CL ‘Goal Of The Week’ Website



Nissan YouTube



UEFA Website






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