Heineken leverages UEFA Champions League to build consumer connect in India

As some of the best football teams in the world battle it out for the UEFA Champions League trophy, Heineken® in India celebrated its association as global partner with the prestigious League, in the company of the Captain of the Indian Football team-Sunil Chhetri.

The occasion marked the announcement of the ‘Heineken Social Reporter’ –who will fly to London to enjoy the Heineken Experience and report on the UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL for the Heineken Social media channels in India. The winner ­­­­­­‘Akhil Shah’ from Mumbai was selected from over 400 applicants received on the brand’s facebook app. Applicants went through a three-stage selection process both online and offline, that assessed their football knowledge and passion, apart from other softer attributes and personality traits.

Heineken® also unveiled its plans for leveraging its global sponsorship of the UEFA Champions League, as it does so for the first time in India. As part of the Global Campaign titled THE ROAD TO THE FINAL, Heineken® in India is activating the campaign via DIGITAL and ON-GROUND channels.

On Digital, the first initiative was THE CANDIDATE video which went viral and has received close to 4 million views worldwide. The SOCIAL REPORTER campaign was, in fact, a follow up to this video campaign.  The brand also unveiled ‘THE ROAD TO THE FINAL’ ad, which features a lucky football fan, who receives a ticket to the UEFA Champions League Final.  The only problem is that he is on the other side of the world and faces a race against the clock to get to the match. Through a combination of resourcefulness, imagination and inventiveness he manages to overcome every obstacle in his way – to be rewarded with the ultimate football experience – a pitch side seat at Wembley, arriving just before kick-off. This ad will be exposed via Digital channels and Social media in India, and can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/user/heineken.The brand’s Facebook fans can also play the highly addictive and social pinball game inspired by elements of the new ad.

On-ground, across bars and beer shops around the country, Heineken has introduced ‘The Road to the Final’ promotion – where consumers can win Heineken merchandize and yet another chance to win a ticket to the BIG FINAL.

Speaking at the event, Samar Singh Sheikhawat, Senior Vice-President Marketing, United Breweries Limited said, “Heineken has been associated with the UEFA Champions League for seven years now. Given the growing fan following that European football now enjoys in India, we decided to leverage our global partnership in India for the first time this year with a multi-pronged activation program. We expect the campaign to make the brand more salient and desirable among young Indian consumers by leveraging a sport that they are increasingly relating to favourably.”

At the event, the newly appointed Social Reporter also had the enviable task of interviewing the captain of the Indian Football team Sunil Chhetri. 

Indian star striker Sunil Chhetri, Captain of the Indian Football Team said, “UEFA Champions League is gaining immense popularity in India. I am delighted to see brands like Heineken bring the sport closer to Indians and build excitement around it. The Heineken Social Reporter is a very interesting initiative. I wish the Social Reporter an eventful and an exciting journey to Wembley. Happy reporting!”


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