GE Appliances is kicking its soccer positioning up a notch

Beyond capturing World Cup hype in Canada, the brand is also looking to better connect with younger, more diverse audiences.

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GE Appliances is on the front foot, so to speak, when it comes to championing the sport of soccer.

The integrated “Made For This” campaign features footballers booting balls around in all kinds of inclement weather, interspersed with highlights from some of Canada’s World Cup qualifying matches. The spot is airing on TSN, TVA, Sportsnet and One Soccer broadcasts.

The video highlights how players who represent Canada, just like GE appliances, are resilient and made to handle the harshest conditions. The spot’s coda zooms in on the GE jersey sleeve patch, part of an expanded partnership with Toronto FC.

Getting more intertwined with “The Beautiful Game” is a way to better connect with younger newcomers to Canada and multicultural families, says Bob Park, chief of brands at GE Appliances Canada.

According to Park, while GE Appliances has broad awareness, particularly among the 45+ set, it needs to create more brand awareness and affinity for a more diverse audience, and with the most popular sport in the world, that’s a great way to do it.

The audience it’s targeting is also younger and engaging with the game on TSN. It’s one part of the integration, and Park says it wants to be everywhere footy fans are, going beyond merely experiential.

GE Appliances already has sponsorships with Toronto FC, Vancouver Whitecaps, and CF Montreal, but Park tells strategy it wanted to emphasize that it’s on a multiyear journey with the game, which is top of mind as Canada has achieved such success, qualifying for World Cup play for the first time in three and a half decades. In January, GE Appliances signed a multi-year deal with Canada Soccer to add the national teams to its soccer sponsorship portfolio.

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Large appliances have fared extremely well during lockdowns, Park says, as home improvement became a huge focus during lockdowns. Kitchen and home renovation booms paid dividends for GE, creating such a big demand spike that it even experienced chip shortages, something that has affected manufacturers of all stripes.

FCB, with which GE’s had a relationship for three years, designed the creative and VMG did video assets, with Craft PR doing the public relations side. The brand is putting “net new spend” behind the campaign, taking advantage of the success of the men’s national team, including a robust digital side that has pre-roll, social amplification and digital banners – all of which will integrate GE Appliances product innovations that make every day better for Canadians.

To further tie the campaign into soccer, GE Appliances is running a national “Clean Sheet” contest (referring to a shutout in soccer parlance). Throughout the MLS season, every time a Canadian MLS team earns a shutout during a home match, fans will have the chance to win a GE UltraFresh laundry pair and GE Appliances will donate $1,000 to eligible non-profits that create opportunities for children and youth to participate in soccer.

Park says it wants to go beyond putting a logo on a billboard or a TV commercial, and to become more ingrained in the game, which it sees building momentum especially as the next World Cup in 2026 will be a North American affair and the women’s team also succeeding at the highest level.