For the National Women's Soccer League, the future is officially now.
In a clever concept developed with VaynerMedia, Budweiser casts Megan Rapinoe in ads calling on other brands to sponsor the NWSL in sundry categories. Bud signed on as the league's official beer sponsor over the summer, and encourages other companies to join the team in this Rapinoe-narrated spot breaking Sunday on ESPN:
"Yeah, these fans drink beer," Rapinoe says in the ad, "but they also use their phones for texting, and headphones for music. They eat snacks, and their pets do, too. The more support the league gets, the more the world will watch."
Bud helped drive record attendance and viewership for the NWSL with its #WontStopWatching initiative. Now, through the "Future Official" campaign, "we turn to other brands and encourage them to support the league like passionate fans," says Monica Rustgi, vp of marketing at the AB InBev-owned brewer.
Folks visiting the "Future Official" website can pledge their support in categories such as eyewear, restaurant, deodorant, oral care, pet food and gum. Those items are represented by bland green product depictions, just waiting for brands slap on their names and logos.
Once visitors pledge, a pop-up invites them to use Facebook and Twitter to tag companies they'd like to see backing the league.
Along with Bud, the NWSL claims four other current sponsors: Nike, Lifetime, Cutter and Thorne. Major League Soccer, where the men play, lists two dozen corporate partners.
That's a pretty big gap, and the cheeky print ads below play up Rapinoe's indignity at using faux products and consuming fake food when she'd enjoy real meals and merchandise from actual sponsors so much more.
Budweiser x NWSL Future Official Sponsor Campaign
U.S. Chief Marketing Officer: Marcel Marcondes
Group Vice President, Core & Value: Ricardo Marques
Vice President, Marketing: Monica Rustgi
Senior Brand Director: Madison Pietrowski
Head of US Sports Marketing, Nick Kelly
Director, Budweiser Sports: Joseph Barnes
Director, Budweiser Sports: Matt Davis
Associate, Budweiser Sports: Hannah Sorkin
Senior Director, Marketing Communications: Matt Kohan
Director, Marketing Communications: Eddie Moye
Senior Brand Manager, Marni Hamberg
Senior Media Manager, Scott Decker
Senior Associate Brand Manager: George Li
Agency: VaynerMedia, New York
Group Creative Director: Adam Lock
Chief Production Officer: Aaron Kovan
Creative Director: Todd Bradley
Creative Director: Harrison Barron
Associate Creative Director: Rami Levi
Art Director: Brittany Newman
Agency Editor: Cristina O'Connell
EVP: Nick Miaritis
VP, Group Account Director: Joe Leotta
Account Director: Lindsay Faulkner
Account Executive: Donald Spampinato
Agency Producer: Joey Joseph
Agency Producer: Katherine Penland
Executive Producer, VaynerSmart: Margaux Ravis
UX/ UI Designer: Xuedi Chen
Sports Marketing: Endeavor
Account Executive: Ben Harwick
Senior Account Manager: Charles de Cabrol
Post Production: VaynerProductions
Editor: Flora Guillon
Assistant Editor: Ananda Ferrari Ossanai
Assistant Editor: Haley Insley
Executive Post Producer: Laura Shea
Post Producer: Russell Greene
Audio: Eric Brown
Colorist: Oliver Eid
Music: JSM Music