Umbro wanted to make some noise around the FIFA World Cup, but budgets were tight, they didn’t have many players to leverage and every brand under the sun was trying to get in on the action. Oh, and the World Cup is a legal minefield for brands who aren’t officially affiliated with the competition.
We’d heard that England wasn’t planning to release an official anthem for 2018, leaving a gap wide open for us to fill. It was the perfect mechanic for creating truly shareable content, given that anthems are traditionally a huge part of football tournament culture and tradition.
Then came the hard part: how to write a football anthem without using any of the words that you'd ordinarily want to – England, World Cup, any of the England players’ names (all banned by FIFA) etc, etc, etc.
So, we decided to use that to our advantage. Channelling Umbro’s down-to-earth personality, we made the FIFA regulations the butt of the joke and wrote an anthem anyway.
Instead of skirting around it, we addressed it head-on at the start of the film, cementing Umbro's position as a brand that’s not afraid to have a laugh and doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Now that we knew what we wanted to say, we just needed to find someone to help us say it. So we turned to comedian Rob Madin, or rather his alter-ego Brett Domino to help deliver the message.
Brett’s ‘How to write a…’ approach seemed the perfect format to share our anthem in an engaging and comical way. Delivered in Brett’s trademark tongue-in-cheek way, the film establishes the crucial building blocks of any top-quality anthem before bringing it all together into a song designed to carry England team to victory (well, the semi-finals as it turned out!).
Umbro exists to be the antithesis to the Nike’s and Adi’s of the world (who often create a ‘hyper-real’ version of football where superstars are placed on pedestals), by bringing football back to the fans and injecting some humour into the game.
And it obviously works, with over 130,000 views on YouTube and numerous shares, retweets, and likes across Umbro’s social media channels.