Ad Nut
Jul 17, 2023

Visa does a number on the FIFA Women's World Cup

The work by Publicis Groupe agencies Saatchi & Saatchi and Starcom doesn't score goals for creativity, but adds a much-needed point towards matching the men's hype.

On the eve of the FIFA Women's World Cup, one might think Ad Nut would be tired of endless football ads by now.  But alas, instead of the sounds of ceaseless FIFA-related brand activiations, this squirrel's ears are becoming more attuned to the sounds of crickets, and Ad Nut is not referring to that other ball sport played on a pitch. 

So, at a time when the lack of PR and brand activity around the World Cup is being called out, Ad Nut can only welcome the notable exceptions to the rule from major brand sponsors, including the latest work from Publicis Groupe's Saatchi & Saatchi Australia, supported by media agency Starcom for Visa.

The campaign, entitled 'Behind Every Number, There's a Story', focuses on the various challenges a player might face as signified by the number on her jersey. In this case, it's the trials and tribulations of a fictional player number 5 playing for Australia (above) or New Zealand

Nonetheless, the storytelling in the film is average. The theme of persevering and overcoming obstacles in sport, complete with scenes of being knocked down and getting up again, has been terribly overdone by this point. Having a fictional player's story being told only adds to the impersonal and generic feel.

At least other digital and OOH assets which followed the film celebrate the stories behind Team Visa world-renowned footballers, Ellie Carpenter (Lyon and Matildas) and Claudia Bunge (Melbourne Victory and NZ Football Ferns) who are returning home to play for their country. 

Overall however, there's a glaring lack of originality here, and adding a jersey number to help tell the story doesn't really move the dial.

To Ad Nut, the best number-related story here is Visa's 20-year support of women in sports and fifth consecutive sponsorship of the FIFA Women's World Cup.

That, and having one more major sponsor invest in a campaign around an event that has curiously attracted relatively little attention by other brands looking to connect with an audience in celebrating women's achievements in sport. 


Client: Visa
SVP, Chief Marketing Officer, Asia Pacific: Danielle Jin 
Head of Marketing, Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific: Natalie Lockwood
Head of Consumer Brand Marketing, Asia Pacific: Karen McGregor
Senior Director, Marketing, Asia Pacific: Alex Khoury
Senior Director Consumer Marketing and Partnerships: Simone Moss
Director, Consumer Marketing and Partnerships: Sam Smedley
Senior Manager, Asia Pacific Campaigns & Creatives, Aaron Yang 

Creative Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi Australia 
Creative Director: Piero Ruzzene
Art Director: Mary Graham
Copywriter: Phoebe Joiner
Creative: Mac Wright 
Head of Strategy: Joe Heath
Group Business Director: Claire Thompson 
Senior Business Manager: Emma McLellan 
Business Executive: Dariusz Kuczynski
Head of Broadcast Production: Michael Demosthenous
Senior Broadcast Producer: Tamara Kennon 
Print Producer: Holly De Roy
Head of Operations: Greer Macpherson 

Production Company: Collider
Director: Beatrice Pegard
Executive Producer: Rachael Ford-Davies
Executive Producer/Producer: Olivia Hantken
DOP: Zoe White
Production Design: Sam Lukins
Colourist: Billy Wychgel
Editor: Adam Wills
Post Production Company: Collider 
Compositor: Stuart Bedford 

Music: Level Two
Darktown Strutter: Everybody Everyday 

Sound: Sonar Music
Engineer: Timothy Bridge
Producer: Haylee Poppi / Louis Moore 

Media: Starcom AU
Client Services Director: Jacqui Purcell
Head of Investment: Rebecca Ho
Performance Director: Angeline Hartono
Account Manager: Mitchell Brown
Investment Manager: Bailey Reed 
Account Executive: James MacGregor  

Starcom NZ
Group Business Director: Paul Hamilton
Business Manager: Beena Dhanji 

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'.



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