Ad Nut
Aug 3, 2023

Cadbury and Ogilvy stitch luck and good wishes ahead of the Rugby World Cup

An effective brand activation that weaves a charming tale of unity and cheer.

Humans believe in luck against all reason. Whilst Ad Nut can argue about the validity of talismans and lucky charms to the holder, Ad Nut understands that fortune is a slippery subject, hard to prove or disapprove. And in the realm of sports, superstition or strange rituals are legion. Serena Williams tying her laces in a specific manner before stepping foot on the court or bouncing the ball five times before serving and twice before delivering a second serve, or Tiger Woods in his formidable red t-shirt on a Sunday that at the peak of his career, was a dreadful sight to playing partners—what Ad Nut is implying is that for reasons beyond the grasp of Ad Nut, superstitions and quirks are a timeless tradition in sports.

Tapping into this allure, chocolate maker Cadbury (also the principal partner of the Wallabies Rugby team), along with creative arm Ogilvy, have tapped into the power of collective goodwill to knit ‘the world’s largest lucky charm’ for their favourite rugby team. A 20-meter-long scarf made from lucky socks, bracelets, jerseys, charms, rugby-ball key rings and smaller scarves collected during the Wallabies' recent tour has been stitched together to send good luck to the Wallabies. The scarf, symbolising hope, belief and a touch of magic, will now travel to France for the Rugby World Cup.

“Australians can’t all get to France,” says Ogilvy Melbourne ECD Hilary Badger.

“But we can send good luck to the Wallabies via the Lucky Scarf. It’s a way we can all get behind the team, whatever the result of World Cup. And to solidify our client Cadbury’s support of sport from grassroots to the elite,” she said.

“As a principal partner of a team, most brands can’t impact the result of a game. By collecting then donating Australia’s luck, Cadbury is creating an emotional swell behind the team, that could genuinely impact its results,” hopes Cadbury’s Brand Equity and Sponsorships director Anthony Ho.

While Ad Nut’s ilk would not have been the first to donate their prized possessions for highly paid sportspersons, rugby fans are somewhat selfless. This looks like a heartfelt way for them to show support—there’s a ‘glass and a half of generosity’ in Wallabies supporters, after all.

The sentiment is heartwarming; it evokes a sense of camaraderie and nostalgia that resonates with both the players and supporters alike; Ad Nut can’t help but appreciate it. It strengthens the emotional connection between Wallabies and their dedicated supporters. Also, it showcases how brands can elevate their sponsorships beyond mere logos and create meaningful and authentic relationships with the community they serve.

In the grand scheme of things, there’s no denying the campaign’s ingenious charm (pun intended)—it is unique, the personal touch makes it stand out among the other rugby campaigns, the excitement it builds is undeniably powerful and tapping into the tradition of luck and superstition in sports is clever.

However, there is one glitch. Call Ad Nut paranoid, but a 20-meter-long scarf sprawled out at a packed public event looks like a tripping disaster waiting to happen. Ad Nut hopes that Cadbury has got the placement, security and other logistics under control and that this beautiful gesture of support does not turn into an impromptu mass tumble at the World Cup.


Creative Agency: Ogilvy
Production Company: Revolver
Art & Directing Collective: The Glue Society
Director & Artist: Paul Bruty
Managing Director/Co-Owner: Michael Ritchie
Executive Producer/ Partner: Pip Smart
Executive Producer: Jasmin Helliar
Producer: Max Horn
Production Designer: Damien Drew
Textile Designer: Anthony Huggett
Sports talent agency: MKTG 

Ad Nut is a surprisingly literate woodland creature that for unknown reasons has an unhealthy obsession with advertising. Ad Nut gathers ads from all over Asia and the world for your viewing pleasure, because Ad Nut loves you. You can also check out Ad Nut's Advertising Hall of Fame, or read about Ad Nut's strange obsession with 'murderous beasts'.


Campaign Asia

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