2014 is the year where Brazil is hosting the FIFA World Cup and some brands like Coca-Cola created a meaningful campaign that helps young kids express themselves and mature through an experience of a lifetime. I learned about Copa Coca-Cola initiative through an invitation to meet Alba Adamo, Group Director of Hispanic Marketing at Coca-Cola and Marcelo Balboa, American soccer defender player in the 1990s for the U.S. national team who will be representing Coca-Cola as an athlete at Copa Coca-Cola.
I asked Marcelo Balboa about role models and his participation in Copa Coca-Cola:
Marcelo Balboa: Role model is a strong word, I think parents, moms and dads are role models. For me it is about telling my story, tell them what it takes to become a professional athlete, promote what we do and how important education is, because we all need an education.
It’s not only that I am a professional athlete, as there is more to life then just playing soccer. Its about the ability to go to school, understanding the importance of education. Also being outside, being active, the respect of wining and loosing, how do you work with your teammates, how do you get along. Its not how you win or loose, its how you play the game . If you win games you win, and if you loose you loose, but its important to have the right sportsmanship, that’s the other side of it too.
I will be at three of the ten tournament sites, to look, evaluate, talk to the kids, be a part while promoting an active lifestyle of playing soccer and being outside. Kids will get to interact with me in Houston, Atlanta and at the final game in Los Angeles.
Lynn: What does this program mean for Coca-Cola?
Alma Adamo: The objective is to bring kids together, this is a global program that takes place in 60 countries and today 1.3 Million have been trough Copa Coca–Cola. They get the opportunity to participate in teams of boys and girls between 13 and 15 years old where they play, develop new friendships, learn about discipline and what it takes to be part of the team.
For Coca-Cola its an opportunity to share our passion for Futbol and kind of develop these new generation of players. This initiative started in Mexico over 14 years ago and was very successful, so it was then adopted across our global system. It started as a Hispanic initiative but became so popular that we decided to bring this opportunity to all kids regardless of what language or where they came from the opportunity to participate.
The tournament, taking place in the U.S. starting February 22, will allow more than 4,000 teens between the ages of 13 and 15 to get active and take part in the excitement leading up to the 2014 FIFA World Cup™. Four players from the national championship teams (two boys and two girls) will have the opportunity to participate in the Copa Coca-Cola Soccer Camp in Brazil, a unique experience with more than 150 other young players from around the world, all Copa Coca-Cola participants of their country’s national tournament.
The free tournament is made possible with help from official partners including McDonald’s ®, Walgreens and the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®), the award-winning loyalty program from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. To participate, teens must sign-up for the tournament as part of a five to seven-player team at www.copa.coca-cola.com starting January 1 through February 16. The first 30 boys’ teams and 30 girls’ teams to register in each participating market will get the opportunity to be part of Copa Coca-Cola.
It’s an amazing experience that brings people together from all over the world,” said Alba Adamo, Group Director of Hispanic Marketing at The Coca-Cola Company.