Oof: World Cup Loss May Have Cost U.S. Women’s Team $10 Million
When the U.S. Women's National Soccer team dropped a late lead against Japan on Sunday, it lost more than a World Cup Championship.
According to Advertising Age, a World Cup Finals victory could have led to a combined $10 million in endorsements for the U.S. Women's team. It also could have made U.S. stars Hope Solo and Abby Wambach global endorsers, in the same way that the 1999 World Cup title did for Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain.
According to Ad Age, the loss allegedly cost Solo and Wambach each $3-$4 million, while their U.S. National teammates could have brought in an additional $2 million combined.
Despite the loss in potential revenue, by no means is the USWNT a dead duck in terms of marketability.
"The defeat cost the U.S. women some heavy endorsement dollars, but I don't think it's a total loss," said Bob Dorfman, exec VP-executive creative director at San Francisco-based Baker Street Partners and an expert in sports marketing. "The final was an epic match, it likely drew a huge audience, and it made household names of Wambach, Solo and [Alex] Morgan."
This year's USWNT team also has the benefit of social media to help create a buzz: the final against Japan set a record for tweets-per-second. New media isn't the only place they've made waves. In addition to the unprecedented level of Twitter attention, a just-released Sports Illustrated cover featuring Solo is something to build on as the team readies itself for the 2012 Olympics.
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