This time, South Africa's leading cellular service provider is encouraging its fans to be the voice behind their teams during the Vodacom Challenge, the annual event that pits two South African soccer greats - Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates - against a United Kingdom legend.
The Vodacom Challenge was first played in 1999 with African teams such as Ghana's Hearts of Oak and Tunisia's Espérance ST playing against the two local clubs. From 2006, the invitation went to English Premier League clubs, with Manchester United losing to Kaizer Chiefs that year, Tottenham Hotspur beating Orlando Pirates in 2007 and, in a 2008 rematch, United winning over Kaizer Chiefs.
This year, Manchester City will play Orlando Pirates on 18 July in Polokwane, and Kaizer Chiefs in Durban on 21 July. On 23 July, Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs will take each other on in the Vodacom Challenge derby in Port Elizabeth. The winner of this match plays Manchester City in the Vodacom Challenge final on 25 July.
The TV ad promoting awareness for the Vodacom Challenge and praising the Beautiful Game's fans broke on July 1. It shows three lonely Manchester City fans over-awed by Pirates and Chiefs fans' passion and dynamism. Other campaign elements - such as print, radio and mobile - will be published and flighted during the week long tournament. Because this is the 10th year of Vodacom's sponsorship of the Vodacom Challenge, a competition element has been incorporated into the campaign.
Said Vodacom's Managing Executive: Marketing, Enzo Scarcella: “The campaign is a follow through from our overriding soccer concept, ‘the power comes from the fans'. For the upcoming Vodacom Challenge, the main message has been tweaked from ‘be the voice behind Bafana Bafana' to ‘be the voice behind your team'. The TV ad conveys this simply and clearly but with all the verve and dynamism we know South Africa's soccer fans are famous for.” Click here to view the ad.