Ad Trends

Campaign Ideas to run After Major Sporting Events like the World Cup

PropellerAds - Campaigns to Run After the World Cup

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What happens to traffic after major sporting events? To find out, we checked the top 5 Verticals and GEOs of the period with our account strategists. So, in this article we’ll tell you what to expect from traffic volumes after major sports events, like the World Cup. And we’ll also see some campaign ideas. 

Some advertisers think that you can only run successful advertising campaigns during major events. No matter if we’re talking about bank holidays, eCommerce days, or even famous sport events.

But we’re here to shed light on the truth by checking the stats during a similar sporting event – Champions League.

An important factor you need to consider for this year’s World Cup campaigns is that this event follows Halloween, and will intertwine with: Black Friday – November 25, Cyber Monday – November 28, St, Nicholas Day – December 6, Hanukkah – December 18, and Kwanzaa December 26 – January 1.  

It’s World Cup, it’s Black Friday, it’s Cyber Monday, and then, it’s Christmas! Do you guys have an idea of how crazy traffic will get?

Konstantinos Kafkalias, Senior Account Strategist

World Cup and Why Advertising after the Final is a Good Idea

Let’s start with global traffic volumes.

After the Tour de France, the World Cup is the second most-watched sporting event. According to FIFA during the last World Cup series held back in 2018, there were 3.57 billion viewers – over half of the world population. While the final was followed by no less than 1.12 billion people worldwide. 

BBC (the largest broadcaster in the world) alone registered a record 49.2 million unique UK browsers during the tournament. And if this isn’t enough, here’s a taste of what the previous Champions League Final held this year did to the affiliate marketing industry in terms of KPIs:

KPIs during the two weeks leading to the FinalKPIs during the two weeks following the Final
Impressions – 254 billion
Clicks – 520 million
Conversions – 58 million
Impressions – 156 billion
Clicks – 357 million
Conversions – 37 million

Lifehack: Start from now by running a RON campaign for each offer you have. On days with football games, like the Champions League on weekdays and national championships on weekends, you will notice the spike on sports streaming zones!

Keep collecting these zones, and create additional campaigns with those Whitelists, with higher CPM rates, to get as much as possible from that traffic, even after the World Cup ends.”

Konstantinos Kafkalias

RON stands for Run on Network – which translates into no limitations, whitelists or blacklists. If you want to find out more about it, check out the Voluum Sports Webinar we were featured in.

What happens with traffic the weeks after the World Cup?

Considering Christmas is just a week away, people will be in shopping spree mode, taking care of their seasonal purchases. And what we have seen with previous religious holidays, like Easter and Ramadan, is that shoppers get a head start now following the pandemic, of approximately 2 weeks. 

But also that they prolong their purchases during the coming two weeks following the holidays, thanks to discounts. So get ready for increased traffic volumes, and prepare your budget ahead of time.

Sure, for the Champions League, we see a slight drop in traffic volume. Yet, it’s only about 38%, and there are no other important holidays in between. Moreover, advertisers and publishers invest a lot in traffic during major sporting events – huge offer and demand. 

So really, what happens after the Champions League is just a normalization of the volumes. But let’s not forget that the craze also lasts for the two weeks following events. Users will still be in the heat of the event, checking numbers, understanding players’ value, and waiting to see new transfers and exchanges. The madness doesn’t just fade away the second the matches are over.

And let’s not forget about eCommerce. Fans are known to rush and mass purchase event memorabilia along with the traditional gifts of the coming season. 

As the traffic volumes are expected not to just plunge but moreover they could jump, even more, you’ll be able to run profitable campaigns. Maybe even with the lower competition since many advertisers just halt all sports campaigns as soon as the event is consumed. 

Here’s a campaign idea – seasonal World Cup related gifts?. 

But, which are the most advantageous combinations of Vertical, Formats, & GEOs after major sporting events? Here’s what the stats and our Senior Account Strategist have to say.

Top 5 Verticals of the period

Most of these verticals are extremely easy to spot. As well as to understand why they’re moving so much during and after important sporting events. While one, in particular, is a bit unexpected but shows the value of a well-crafted marketing strategy.


Volume the 2 Weeks
Leading to the Final
Volume the 2 Weeks
After the Final
Change in Percentage
52 Billion Impressions27 Billion Impressions-48%

Utilities delivered over 27 billion impressions during the two weeks following the Champions League. Making it the vertical with the highest traffic volume of the period. 

No wonder this is a Super-Vertical during and even after sporting events. People want to gain access to online sources they wouldn’t otherwise get access to. From VPNs to AdBlockers, Cleaners, Antiviruses, and everything in between, sports fans equip their devices to make sure that everything is working perfectly.

And the bonuses, offers, and promos make Utilities more than irresistible. Lucky for you, nothing is stopping you from continuing like this in the coming weeks – for Christmas and New Year as well.

But why would people need to use these once the event is over? Obviously, to catch up with the latest discussions and shows on the topic. To follow stats, and sometimes even to watch replays that often get removed by YouTube or blocked. And also to satisfy the need of users in search of exclusive content, shots from the matches, and reruns not freely available on the internet.

So, what happens with the Utilities traffic after the final? We verified the stats, and in fact, the drop is by only 48% from a staggering 52 billion impressions.

The traffic volume change leaves you with plenty of enthusiasts to advertise for – 27 billion in the case of the Champions League.

Utilities Campaign Ideas to run after the World Cup 2022?

Consider what your clients need at this point, and embrace the coming period’s trends as well. So, they just watched a highly anticipated event, and are still in the fever of the moment. And we know what they could use your services for. So what can you offer?

  • Extended device cleanup services, following high usage and in preparation for the Holiday season
    • Main message: ‘The seasonal cleaning extends to your device
  • New VPN Deal to watch both sports channels and Holiday movies
    • Main message: ‘Don’t miss any Sports or Christmas show’ 
  • Better antivirus protection to access even the least well-known websites
    • Tis the time to get extra protection
  • And even just plain, straightforward messages like: ‘Install VPN to continue watching’ or ‘Continue Watching in Safe Mode. Install Application

Finance & Sweepstakes

Volume the 2 Weeks
Leading to the Final
Volume the 2 Weeks
After the Final
Change in Percentage
23 Billion Impressions16 Billion Impressions-30%

Together, these two verticals worked magic and continued to deliver over 16 billion impressions during the two weeks immediately after the Champions League. 

And it’s no wonder why. If we know anything about Finance and Sweepstakes, it’s that they can easily shapeshift and benefit from any type of event. There’s a lot you can learn from these verticals if you’re working in any other industry.

Finance & Sweepstakes Campaign Ideas to run after the World Cup?

Sports-related bonuses and awards go perfectly with these two verticals as well. Just sprinkle a bit of winter wonderland magic to them, and you’re good to go:

  • Upcoming game tickets message – ‘Christmas, trinkets, and next season tickets
  • Personalized Gadgets message – ‘Who said Santa didn’t go Digital?
  • Collectibles message – t-shirts, bobblehead figures, cards – ‘Santa’s early for World Cup fans’
  • Actual Cash Bonuses message – ‘This Christmas, nothing sounds better than cha-ching!

When it comes to Finance & Sweepstakes, you just need to be creative enough to know how to skillfully connect your offer with the event theme. And no matter what happens, don’t forget about the winter season. 

But also ensure that your creatives and text comply with the regulations. 


Volume the 2 Weeks
Leading to the Final
Volume the 2 Weeks
After the Final
Change in Percentage
17 Billion Impressions10 Billion Impressions-41%

This is a very popular vertical worldwide. Users get to live the excitement and thrill of the game and winning, at any time, from wherever. If there’s anything that characterizes this vertical, that’s color, glam, and a lot of dough.  

The best part: it opens the door to new and exciting campaign ideas. Although among our clients, we noticed a tendency to use similar ads during both the sports events specific campaign, and following them, try to follow the example of the previous verticals – do an events mash-up.

And the good news, is the traffic only drops in the two weeks following the World Cup by about 41%.

You’re left with a good 10 billion impressions, if we’re to judge based on the Champions League alone. But let’s not forget other major holidays are also near. 

 iGaming Campaign Ideas to run after the World Cup?

You can easily launch campaigns based on important details from the championship – memorable moments from important football players when it comes to iGaming. 

Because while images have copyright laws protecting them, names don’t. Just make sure you’re not implying that they’ve endorsed your offer and that the name/catchphrase is not trademarked:

  • Main message: “Can you roll like Neymar?!” – Using words that have several meanings is pretty easy, and allows you to connect this message with pretty much any offer. For extra success make sure to pair it with one that has a Christmas themed reward.
  • Main Message: “Score like MBappe” – this phrase is active, uses a players name (of course, make sure to use a successful player’s name, if Mbappe didn’t score find someone that has spectacular results) and allows you to pair it with pretty much any offer, for any type of activity or game.
  • Main Message: “Have a very Messi Christmas” – let’s face it. There’s no way Lionel Messi won’t have a great performance at this year’s World Cup. Also, this is kind of a shocking message since ‘Messi’ sounds just like ‘messy’, and no one wants a bad holiday.
    Just check his results, add a dash of insight about it, and offer an irresistible prize. Build a campaign around this idea, and make sure the prize will make your users actually feel like Messi, even just for a day.


Volume the 2 Weeks
Leading to the Final
Volume the 2 Weeks
After the Final
Change in Percentage
9 Billion Impressions6 Billion Impressions-33%

Who could ever doubt that eCommerce can possibly have a bad performance during any type of events? Well, this bad boy manages to stay afloat even during the worst of times – like a big financial crisis. And let’s not forget that Christmas is near. So no matter if it’s to shop for Football memorabilia or just good old Christmas gifts, this vertical will thrive. 

In fact, following the Champion League, eCommerce continued to bring in a good 2 billion impressions.

Moreover, analysts forecast shopping habits will return to pre-pandemic norms – hello last-minute shopping. Which will potentially extend to the New Year shopping list too. 

In simple words, traffic is expected to blow even higher than just post-World Cup levels.

eCommerce Campaign Ideas to run after the World Cup?

When it comes to eComm, the sky’s the limit, really. You can find everything under this vertical. During the testing period, check the zone ID’s traffic and make sure your campaign messages match their appetite. And yes, with the right message, you can even sell sports stuff on beauty websites. 

Cause don’t forget, everybody’s got a special man.

Now whether he is a father, brother, husband, or son – that’s in the eyes of the beholder, as they say. And we all know everybody deserves a good gift for Christmas or New Year. While sport-related products can actually be the gift, many have been looking for.

But of course, beauty site audiences aren’t the only ones you can target. So check out these one size fits all campaign messages, and craft your special post-World Cup, pre-Winter Season Campaigns with style:

  • “Who said the World Cup ended? Bring it back for Christmas
  • Looking for New Year Gifts? Check out these World Cup collectibles.
  • Your special man is worth a gift he will appreciate. Choose his World Cup favorite and really surprise him this year

Pair these messages with a great offer of sports gear, bags, wallets, clothes, gadgets, jewelry, or pretty much anything World Cup-related.


Volume the 2 Weeks
Leading to the Final
Volume the 2 Weeks
After the Final
Change in Percentage
5 Billion Impressions2 Billion Impressions-60%

Last but not least in our top 5 verticals that perform best after big Sports Events is clearly the Sports Vertical. This beauty manages to keep 2 billion impressions in the two weeks following the Champions League. Now, if we’re to multiply this by 10, as high as the World Cup traffic can potentially get, you’re in for a gold mine. 

Although sports suffer the largest traffic volume drop after sports events by 60%, you must not forget the lesson learned from the previous verticals. Users still live in the heat of the matches, and they want to make the World Cup rush last as long as they can. Which is what opens the door for Seasonal and World Cup combo Offers.

Also, think of this: Before reading this article, you (my dear affiliate friend) thought that there is no life after the World Cup. And along with you, a huge majority of affiliates out there thought of the same!

Which means, traffic is still there, but your competitors will buy less! Isn’t this a great opportunity for you to catch as much traffic as possible, even with less competition and more ease?” as Konstantinos puts it.

Sports Campaign Ideas to run after the World Cup?

At the beginning of this article, we were talking about shows that users can watch and reviews, or player ratings, changes, new purchases, and so on. These are your Sports campaign ideas. Mix them up with a bit of Christmas & New Year magic, and you’ve got yourself a formula for success.

Given the period, this should be the simplest vertical to advertise for. As it’s the spirit, combine it with a dazzle of winter season magic, and you’re set to succeed. 

And here are a couple of messages you could use:

  • Is your team really the best team of the season?” This quiz kind of message can easily lead to any offer that allows users to play live games
  • Make your Christmas magic. Playing for your World Cup team” again, a distinct message that can be paired with online games

Don’t forget to use the right images for your ads, and pick from our top-performing formats: Classic Push Notifications, In-Page Push, Interstitials, and Onclick Popunders. 

Top GEOs to Target after Sports Events

Based on the same Champions League Final from this year, we picked the top 5 GEOs in the order of traffic volumes generated. But also the top 3 verticals where these GEOs performed best:

GEOsTraffic Volume – ImpressionsTop 3 Verticals
IN29 Billion ImpressionsUtilities, iGaming, Dating
ID19 Billion ImpressionseCommerce, Dating, Sweepstakes
BR7 Billion ImpressionsSports, Finance, Utilities
TH6 Billion ImpressionsiGaming, eCommerce, Utilities
US3 Billion ImpressionsUtilities, eCommerce, Dating

Considering that based on last year’s stats the top 3 Verticals of the Winter season were Utilities, iGaming, and Dating for our formats, we start to see a pattern. While in terms of best-performing GEOs from last year’s winter holiday season, we’re missing Mexico, Peru, and France. 

So keep that in mind for your campaign targeting.

“Moreover, during sports events, Brazil is one of the strongest GEOs. We notice a significant loss of traffic once these pass. In fact, immediately after the Champions League, Brazil lost almost half of its audience”, according to Konstantinos.

Formats to Advertise with After the World Cup

Yet, last year India and Indonesia underperformed on OnClick Popunders. So just make sure to properly test your campaigns, and get ready to take action if anything goes against you.

“Buy almost unlimited Onclick traffic to place the cookie. Do that on a daily basis, start doing that now! The World Cup is not far away. Mark the user to be yours, and what easier and cheaper way than Onclick?”

At least, that’s ? what Konstantinos said. Double-check before buying it on Popunders for India and Indonesia.

Unless the tests don’t show anything different. And don’t forget that when it comes to Push and Interstitials, you can always use Rule-Based Optimization.

“Then, buy Push Notifications to alert the user of upcoming games. ‘Event-based’ campaigns. Use relevant creatives, don’t let a user go without noticing”, as Konstantinos puts it.

Bidding and Budgeting

As for bidding models, we checked with our Senior Account Strategist and sports enthusiast, Konstantinos, and here’s what he has to say:

“During the World Cup, it’s highly recommended to buy CPM, CPC models, for maximum volumes. After the World Cup, and when the storm is off, I suggest switching to CPA Goal models since competition will be slower.

And you can also take advantage of automation in optimizing your campaigns. Remember to have S2S tracking in place for this.”

Since you’re barely getting out of a high-traffic period and entering the next one, you have to prepare your budget for any traffic spikes and abnormal fluctuations, which are to be expected.

Keep in mind to supplement your margin, and have some extra cash for when your campaigns are performing unexpectedly well

We also noticed another interesting fact, the CPM doesn’t fluctuate during and after major sports events. Which is definitely a good thing to keep in mind when coming up with your campaign target. 

Final Word of Advice

“Assemble yourselves already. Choose the best converting verticals per GEO you are interested in. You can check the top GEOs & Verticals from above.

Plan the execution of your campaigns. Go on spy tools and find the best creatives and pre-landers. Watch the games’ scheduling. Make money,” as Konstantinos puts it.

The bottom line: there is still traffic on the websites you targeted for World Cup Campaigns. Now whether you want to continue teasing with World Cup-related offers, or just plain Winter Season ones, it’s up to you. 

We’ve just shown you where the good traffic lies, and how to successfully make the most of it. 

As for the rest: the key to successful Advertising campaigns is to connect your offers to actual events that happen in the vicinity of your campaign. And that includes time, GEO location, and impact for the audience you’re targeting. 

The closer it hits home, the more they’ll care about it. No matter if we’re talking about advertising sports offers on beauty websites.

As long as you’re creative enough in pitching your message, you can get the girliest girl to buy her boyfriend a jersey of his favorite team. Whether it’s for Christmas or even Purim ?.

No matter what offers you choose, you need to make sure you differentiate from the competition. And, lucky for you, that’s all in the message. The more your play with what interests your target audience, the better your campaigns are set to perform.

And here’s one final word from Konstantinos:

‘Preparation will be the key to success for the upcoming end-of-Autumn-beginning-of-Winter, booming of traffic’ 

For everything else:

Launch campaign


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