Client: Nationwide Building Society
PR Team: Ptarmigan Consultants
Campaign: Giant England shirt
Timescale: May - June 2000
Budget: pounds 70,000
The Nationwide Building Society is the sponsor of the England football
team. In the run-up to the Euro 2000 Championships in June 2000,
Nationwide wanted to position itself as the England team's 'biggest
Rather than trying to compete with other sponsors using the tournament
itself to promote their brands, Nationwide chose to run a PR campaign
during the six-week build-up to the tournament.
To position Nationwide as the team's 'biggest supporter' and to dominate
media coverage of England's sponsorship.
Nationwide also wanted the campaign to involve fans and double
spontaneous awareness of Nationwide as the England team sponsor.
Ptarmigan had to achieve media coverage valued at at least double the
cost of the campaign.
Strategy and Plan
Ptarmigan decided to produce an England shirt which measured 60ft by
90ft and was branded with the Nationwide logo and 'Come on England'.
Roadshows in May and early June immediately prior to Euro 2000 were
planned so fans and celebrities could sign the shirt with their good
luck messages to the team.
A launch release promoted then England boss Kevin Keegan's backing for
the initiative and called on all England fans to sign the shirt at the
Ptarmigan also used Keegan's Euro 2000 squad announcement to hold the
launch photocall and carried out a ring-round to all the national and
key regional media on the morning of the photocall.
For the roadshows, Ptarmigan devised a programme of activity
co-ordinated by a professional PA who could reinforce the campaign
message, as well as encouraging participation in the activities. Former
England players Nobby Stiles, Ray Wilkins, Peter Shilton, Terry Butcher
and Jimmy Greaves took part in photocalls and gave interviews. The
players signed autographs and added their signatures to the shirt.
Promotional staff in Nationwide-branded outfits handed out 'I'm backing
England Nationwide' stickers to visitors and a free prize draw was held
to win tickets to either the England v Ukraine or England v Brazil
At the latter game, which was broadcast by Sky, the giant shirt was
placed on the centre circle.
Ptarmigan also approached celebrities to lend their support and arranged
a good luck message from Tony Blair. The shirt was finally put on
permanent display in the media centre, at Keegan's first tournament
press conference in the town of Spa, Belgium.
Measurement and Evaluation
Media coverage was evaluated using Cutting Edge and research was carried
out by Sports Marketing Papertrack to compare coverage of other Euro
2000 sponsors. Independent research by RSL was also undertaken to
discover awareness of Nationwide as the team sponsor.
Ptarmigan's campaign met all its objectives. Coverage was achieved in
all target media and research confirmed that Nationwide received more
coverage in the run-up to Euro 2000 than any of the other sponsors.
More than 10,000 signatures and good luck messages were put on the shirt
and more than 300,000 people saw the shirt at the roadshows. Research
revealed that awarenss of Nationwide as the England sponsor more than