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Martel et Compagnie
465 rue McGill, 8e Etage
Montreal, Quebec H2Y 2H1
+514 525 4290

Jean-Pierre Martel

President & Chief Creative Officer


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#EnviaMalaSuerte Wishes Bad Luck All Over the World

Lapiz, the multicultural agency inside Leo Burnett, in partnership with Leo Burnett Interactive, recently launched an integrated campaign that aims to put Allstate on everyone’s lips during the World Cup. The secret weapon? The iconic “Mala Suerte” ("bad luck") character. The campaign begins with a set of TV spots where Mala Suerte shows us how luck switches from year to year and team to team, and how his presence coincides with the losing team. At the end, Mala Suerte invites viewers to ask him via social media to pay a visit to their rival teams. We sat down with team members Maria Bernal, John Regan, Jorge Pomareda and Carlos Bretel who gave us an insider's look at how they're pulling this off.

The World Cup "war room" -- how does it work? Any great anecdotes thus far?
Carlos: The war room or Mala Suerte’s headquarters is where we’ve been living since the World Cup started. We keep track of social media activity and matches. It takes a lot of people to do Mala Suerte’s job. So far, I’m proud to say that we’ve been cursed by a witch on Twitter for playing with misfortune. Also, people are using the hashtag to send bad luck to Latin America politicians — even the King of Spain.

How fast can you react with a new piece of creative? How is it possible to react that quickly?
John: As long as one of our team members (I won’t say who) isn’t smashing his phone when Spain is playing poorly, we can post new videos pretty quickly. We started with the hopes of getting a fresh video out in under an hour. In reality we are pushing these videos out about 5 minutes after bad luck strikes on the pitch.

How many unique pieces of video creative have you created to pull this off?
John: At last count, the total was 283 unique videos. You never know what could happen during the World Cup, so we needed to make sure all our bases were covered. I mean corners.

What's it like to watch each and every World Cup game?
John: Let’s just say that a month ago I didn’t know the difference from Cristiano Ronaldo and Ronald McDonald. So watching 3 games a day, everyday for 2 weeks really got me up to speed quickly.

What departments are involved in pulling this off?
Jorge: Mainly Lapiz and Leo Burnett Interactive, Tapestry and Arc (Community Management). It would be easier to list the departments here that aren’t involved in this project. Apparently the World Cup is a big deal.. who knew?

What's it like to watch each and every World Cup game?
Carlos: On the paper was like a dream come true. But after a few weeks, I’m almost glad that World Cup only happens every 4 years.

Be honest – is the "mala suerte" working?
Maria: We have a campaign that only targets the Hispanic market, and so far we have been a trending topic on Twitter during two important World Cup games. I think that shows that a lot of people believe the Mala Suerte is working.

Jorge: Ask the US team. Many US fans used the #EnviaMalaSuerte hashtag to send bad luck to the USA’s rivals and we can say… he helped. Also Costa Rica received a last minute plead against Greece and now they’re in Quarterfinals for the first time in their history. This has been a very unique and interesting World Cup, we’ve seen big teams have very bad luck and small teams going against every prediction.

July 3, 2014