If you were watching the World Cup final last night, you might have been stunned to see who was handing out the medals.
The uniforms of Emirates' cabin crew were unmistakable behind the players. The carrier has been an official FIFA WorldWide partner since 2006, but this is admittedly a step up and quite the coup.
It's clever to have put the focus on the cabin crew—as they've been doing for quite some time (see some World Cup examples below, though note that the social image for the final was focused on the pilots).
Were the people handing out the medals stand-ins or real crew? I would argue that if they were the real deal, Emirates would have used the story in its communication (it has not, so far at least).
I don't know how much they're paying for the privilege of being so prominently featured. An estimate in the range of USD 25-50 million per year was floated last month, although I'm not sure if it's based on 2013's FIFA marketing rights which amounted to north of USD 400 million or this year's, which could skyrocket to a staggering USD 1.5 billion.
Whilst it's Lufthansa that supports the winning German team, Emirates did also send its heartfelt congratulations.
I love that airline. One of my best memory remains being able to watch World Cup live games in 2010 while cruising over the Indian Ocean on an Emirates B777-300ER.