Football mania has begun…and love it or hate it, football supporters from all around the world have turned their attention to Brazil, as their teams battle it out in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Houses, shops, bars and offices have become draped in patriotic flags, bunting and posters; adults and kids are supporting team attire of various sorts while the all-essential match planner wall charts have come out with a vengeance, as the office sweep stakes swing in to action (yes, we’re full steam ahead at AD too…come on Greece!)
As football mania rains down around the globe, what better way for the global print community to showcase its wares – the Football World Cup provides the perfect global platform to demonstrate the very best of print and all the latest creative features and innovative technologies.
Just about every form of printing will have been used to produce the millions of world cup merchandise and memorabilia – litho and digital print; wide format print; personalised and lenticular print; printed textiles; vinyl wall decals; photographic and fine art prints, not to mention more creative die-cutting, varnishing and finishing techniques. If you can look beyond the football hysteria, you can see it all.
Take the official tickets for example. While I’m unlikely to ever get my hands on one to check, they will undoubtedly be awash with sophisticated anti-counterfeit applications to deter the underworld, drawing on the benefits of such printing applications as holograms, linear, data matrix and QR codes, RFID tags as well as using specialist security inks.
A quick look at the official FIFA website alone lends itself as a gallery of all that is exciting and innovative about print. From small pin badges, stickers and leaflets to personalised football kit and sophisticated wall art, not to mention the officially printed footballs at a mere $179 a piece! It’s all there. And then when you consider how the official sponsors and other enterprising businesses are all cashing in to maximise opportunities to create innovative print-led competitions and branded collateral, the potential arena to showcase print at its best is endless.
Whether you are a football fan or not, we’ll all hope that our respective team will be successful. But in my mind, there’s only one big winner in this World Cup, and for me, that’s print!