- Fox Sports paid $US200 million to broadcast this summer’s World Cup in the United States, but the U.S. failed to qualify for the tournament.
- So, the network has teamed with genome testing company 23andMe to encourage fans to research their ancestry to find a rooting interest in the World Cup.
- The network has research indicating this could be a sound business strategy.
The World Cup is one of the biggest sporting events in the United States, a time when a nation that pays, relatively speaking, little attention to soccer, collectively gathers to cheer on the good ol’ stars and stripes.
So, naturally, Fox Sports shelled out a whopping $US200 million for the rights to broadcast the World Cup – a decision which now looks like a disaster from a financial standpoint given that the U.S. has missed qualifying for the World Cup for the first time in over 30 years.
As an alternative, Fox Sports has teamed up with the genome testing company 23andMe and launched the “Root for Your Roots” campaign to to encourage fans to find new countries to watch and root for in this World Cup.
“We’re all connected to a World Cup nation through our DNA,” proclaims a commercial that began airing recently. “So this summer, root for your roots. Watch the FIFA World Cup on Fox, and let Fox broadcast sponsor 23andMe help you find your team.”
And this strategy could make for a pretty solid fallback option.
Research conducted by the network found that 76% of fans who knew their ancestry said that they would watch more of the World Cup if one of their ancestral countries of origin was competing. Furthermore, 58% of fans who did not know their ancestry would watch more of the World Cup if they did, according to information provided by the network.
“Even without the U.S. team, the World Cup remains an incredible global moment led by international teams and stars to root for,” says Robert Gottlieb, Executive Vice President of Marketing, Fox Sports. “This work with 23andMe is a creative way to encourage additional fans to embrace the beautiful game and discover a second team to support.”
You can watch the commercial below.
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