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Brand Strategy Football Sports Marketing

Adidas gears its World Cup football kits launch toward Gen Z audiences


By John Glenday, Reporter

September 14, 2022 | 4 min read

Kit maker turns to manga and influencers to reveal shirt designs for this winter’s competition in Qatar.


Adidas gears its World Cup football kits toward Gen Z audiences

Adidas is adopting a highly targeted approach for the launch of its 2022 World Cup kits, eschewing the dazzle of a traditional high-profile reveal in favor of secretly stashing the kits across cultural hotspots.

The Easter egg approach is designed to tickle the fancy of the Gen Z demographic by allowing specific fans to discover the kits for themselves instead of being presented as a broad public release.

Intended to impart a sense of ownership to privileged Gen Z audiences, the approach was masterminded by TBWA/London, which has crafted an up-tempo accompanying video to unmask Adidas as the mastermind of the launch following two months of secrecy.

Building anticipation ahead of the November 20 kick-off of the sporting spectacular, the release was coordinated worldwide and saw Japanese fans unearthing the kits in special editions of manga comics while their counterparts in Argentina discovered their kit on the wall of the national team’s favored barber shop.

Matt Davidson, the head of global football brand marketing at Adidas, said: “Culture became our secret weapon. Gen-Z is Gen-Z first, national identity second. They don’t follow the rules set by generations before them, so we used the global stage to shine a light on the culture they are shaping at the crossroad with football.“

Cultivating hype and anticipation through two months of protracted silence, Adidas kept its lips sealed even as speculation swirled as to the identity of the phantom kit mastermind among the footballing fraternity. This was further fueled by recruiting influencers from each of the seven chosen regions to reveal the hidden kits.

Brand Strategy Football Sports Marketing

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