Even if Grealish Didn’t Cut the Mustard, We’re All Still Talking About Mayonnaise

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The 2024 summer will serve as a reminder of how there is no such thing as bad advertising. See Exhibit A – Jack Grealish, the poster boy of Hellmann’s UK Mayonnaise advert for barbecuing during EURO 2024.

The only problem is that Grealish isn’t in Germany helping the Three Lions try and win their first trophy since 1966, after Gareth Southgate opted not to pick the attacking midfielder.

Grealish winning in Sardinia and not Germany 

As for Grealish’s exact whereabouts, the last time the 28-year-old was seen was in Sardinia – proudly showing off the sweat he worked up to his nine million Instagram followers after a run on the Mediterranean island.

While still impressive, Hellman’s would have been hoping that Grealish would be showing off pictures of himself lifting the Henri Delaunay Cup in Berlin on the 14th of July instead.

Still, even if the only thing Grealish has to declare at customs on his return to the UK is a tan and not silverware, Hellman’s will be thrilled that they’re still being mentioned even if their star man is thousands of miles from the action.

You are, after all, currently reading an article about mayonnaise and Grealish, which does prove the point that any advertising is ultimately positive.

It really is a win-win situation for everyone involved, even if there were miscalculations made by marketing executives over the winter.

Backing the wrong horse 

The truth is that this advert was filmed three months ago in a studio in Manchester. At the time, Grealish was on course to make the plane to Germany, but a personally underwhelming end to the season saw his prospects dashed.

In short, Hellman’s were as surprised as anyone at Grealish’s alarming drop-off, but they’re not the first company to back the wrong English horse.

Google asked Marcus Rashford to sell their new Pixel phones this summer, while Harry Maguire is currently punting EE’s broadband offerings. Again, neither player is in Germany.

Perhaps the answer for companies is to back players who are proven winners, to avoid feeling short-changed. This is, at least, what top online casino company PokerStars did when they signed up with Cristiano Ronaldo in 2015. The two have collaborated on many successful World Cups and EUROS since.

Of course, and with the greatest respect to the two Manchester United ‘stars’, the advertising budget doesn’t always allow for it, which is why most other companies have to shop around in the bargain bin as they look to get the best value.

Any Publicity is Good Publicity 

This summer proves beyond all doubt that when an advertising campaign backfires as it has with Grealish, social media and online news columns will keep the advert alive by poking fun at a company’s misfortune.

Ultimately, this schadenfreude might result in Hellman’s selling more bottles of mayonnaise than they ever have over a specific summer. Indeed, far from putting the mayonnaise makers in a pickle, Grealish has upheld his end of the bargain: to be spoken about throughout the entire tournament in Germany.

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