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The first FIFA World Cup on African soil was a moment of truth. For football, for the country and our continent. And for MTN, the first global sponsor from Africa. MTN-SA, charged with activating the FIFA experience on-the-ground, launched the Ayoba campaign in October 2009. It was the first step in the brand's quest to galvanize the nation for the FIFA World Cup. We wanted to use MTN's global sponsorship, to give every person in South Africa the means to reach out and touch the beautiful game.

As a telco, we defined our purpose as 'giving the nation a shared language with which to engage in the FIFA World Cup'. In a country where one of the biggest impediments to national unity is the language barrier, 'Ayoba', a word from South Africa's township culture, gave the nation a single, positive phrase that everyone could unite in using.


The ‘Ayoba’ Campaign was MTN’s way to start a FIFA World Cup conversation with South Africa, with each other, and then with the world. The campaign was launched with multiple TV, outdoor, radio and digital elements (websites, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube). Promotions and on-the-ground activations followed, all building towards the actual tournament, by which time the campaign also infiltrated the FanFests, stadiums and live broadcasts.


The campaign received unsolicited coverage on CNN, BBC, SABC news, via Reuters & AP, on news/entertainment websites in over 25 different languages across the globe and on the front pages of South African national newspapers like the Sunday Times, Saturday Star & Natal Mercury. 96% of South Africans claimed to have seen or heard an MTN Ayoba advertisement. (KLA) Before a single game was played, 83% of people agreed with the statement, "MTN is the biggest FIFA 2010 World Cup Sponsor." (KLA) Highest spontaneous awareness of all FIFA sponsors in South Africa:(Market Track) MTN - 26% Coca-Cola - 18% FNB - 13.8% Would the 2010 FIFA World Cup have been a success without MTN? Of course. But it definitely wouldn't have been Ayoba.

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