As the football season kicks off this weekend, Paddy Power is ploughing on with its 'unsponsorship' stunt, with the release of a funny ad that calls up rivals for treating football shirts like billboards.
Last month, Paddy Power set tongues wagging when it revealed its bold new design for Huddersfield Town’s kit. Blazoned across like a Hen Do sash, the distinctive shirt left no shadow of a doubt as to who was sponsoring the Championship team.
After it revealed the kit, it left the public stewing over the meaning behind its actions, before announcing it was a hoax. Rather, it was doing quite the opposite; it was ‘unsponsoring’ the team and removing the logo entirely.
And although the audacious stunt ran the risk of fining the club for breaching FA sponsorship guidelines, the cheeky gambling shop stopped at nothing to make its point clear: stop bastardising football shirts.
Since then, Paddy Power has announced that it is 'unsponsoring' Motherwell, Newport County, Southend United and Macclesfield Town. To celebrate this, Paddy Power and VCCP have released a satirical spot to celebrate its unbranding stunt.
The spot opens with a football fan pulling on a fresh football top. As he stares at his reflection in the mirror, he notices the ‘Grumpy Pigeon’ logo stamped on the front, and his deflated face says it all. In another scene, a football fan sits at a bus stop, making eyes at the women sat next to him. As their eyes flirt she looks down and notices the top is sponsored by ‘LittleBluePill’ and the sexual tension bursts like a popped balloon, as she averts her eyes awkwardly.
The film continues to show scenes of various football fans working to cover up their audacious sponsorship logos. In one scene, a typical football hooligan fight looks set to start between one team sponsored by ‘Guitar Airway’ and another by ‘Mr Softy.’ As the softies square up, the opposing side burst into laughter pointing at their embarrassing shirts.
It ends with a voiceover saying “wouldn’t it be great if your footie shirt looked less like a billboard? That’s why Paddy Power have launched ‘Save Our Shirt’ where every team we sponsor, we’re unsponsoring and they won’t have our logo at all."
The campaign includes social, TV, Print, Digital, Digital OOH, PR and sponsorship.
Discussing the 'Save Our Shirts' campaign, Michelle Spillane, Paddy Power’s brand marketing director, said: “The response to the campaign has been phenomenal and we are delighted to be launching the next phase of our campaign and hope it inspires others to join our quest to give a clean shirt back to the fans.”
Adding to this, Mark Orbine exec creative director at VCCP Blue commented: “We are hugely proud of our work with Paddy Power. Save Our Shirt has seen great success since it kicked off with the Huddersfield Town news.”