The Ashes 2019 is well and truly underway, with the fight for the title between England and Australia in full swing. Here in Birmingham, we have felt the excitement that surrounds the tournament, with the first leg taking place in Edgbaston.
Cricket always brings out a harsh rivalry between the two nations, and this time it has stretched beyond the playing field. Marmite and its Aussie rival, Vegemite have commenced a war of words to argue which is better.
It started when free jars of Marmite were handed out to Australian fans during the first Ashes test matches at Edgbaston, Birmingham. When Vegemite got wind of the news, they issued a full page advertisement in the Daily Mirror, calling out Marmite.
The full page spread was addressed to Marmite, stating that “news has reached down under that free jars of Marmite are being handed out at the Ashes to try to prove it tastes better than our Vegemite. Are you guys barmy? Of course the refined English palate would prefer yours”.
The ad also refers to the Australian cricket team’s success, saying that “Vegemite tastes like back-to-back tons on your return test. Vegemite tastes like a come-from-behind victory by 251 runs”.
Vegemite argues that “you lot won’t like the taste of Vegemite. Because Vegemite tastes like Australia”. The advert is signed off by Vegemite with a simple “catch ya at Lord’s”.
Marmite responded with their own advert: “dear Vegemite, we might not taste like Australia, but love it or hate it, we won’t be tampering with it”. Marmite refers to the ball tampering scandal that 3 Australian players were involved in, capturing the attitude seen from England fans towards the Australian team.
Marmite sign off the advertisement with “see you at the home of cricket”, linking back to how Vegemite ended their advert.
It is unsure to whether this is the last exchange between the two, or if more is to come from the two brands before the final at the Oval in September.
By utilising a popular sporting event such as the Ashes and playing on the rivalry the event creates between the two nations is a very clever PR tactic. The two brands have used the
well known debate of which is the better product, and applied it at the right time to drum up discussion. Not only does this create a discussion on social media, but also shows that the brands don’t take themselves too seriously.