Go big or go home! Red Bull’s space jump stunt with Felix Baumgartner has been calculated to yield over £100-million (about R1.4-billion) in return on exposure for the brand.
This was calculated after only four days, while the impact of the incredible feat is still reverberating through all media channels.
The jump was a very risky marketing move for Red Bull – but they had the courage of their conviction and it paid off handsomely.
The marketing impact is not just about being on the news, printed in newspapers and spoken about – it is about ruling the waves with funny, serious and viral memes.
Had the jump been unsuccessful, for any reason, I have no doubt the amount of exposure and return would have been similar but not necessarily positive.
Advertisers need to identify strong media platforms that fit their brands and be courageous in execution. In today’s integrated media space you can create massive impact when a big idea is executed in an epic way, whether risky or not.
The rule is that you must stay true to your key brand benefits, which must come across very strongly. The jump was a proof point of the idea that Red Bull gives you ‘wings’. And because of the fact that extreme sport like this is second nature for Red Bull, they became marketing pioneers through the stunt and literally give their own brand ’wings’.
From water sports and motor sports to base-jumping athletes, Red Bull’s single-minded support for extreme sport gives them phenomenal value.
The jump at its peak had eight million people watching live on YouTube, breaking the previous record of 500 000 concurrent views, according to AllThingsD.
The video received over two million views with 24 hours of the jump, which is 1 388 views per minute. Gone are the days that global stunts and events are viewed later; the Web has changed the way we consume live events, and within seconds consumers are generating content around them and before you as the marketer or advertiser.”
Not to be outdone, some brands used quick-thinking ambush marketing to link their brand own proposition to the stunt.
American snack foods company Slim Jims, known for their comedic campaigns, responded with ‘the world’s shortest free-fall’ on a popular American late night show, while Lego shot a short stop-motion film that recreated the stunt using a range of their space themed construction toys.
Confectionary company Kit Kat capitalised on the tension preceding the jump, attaching a chocolate to a weather balloon and sending it up, with their tagline ‘Have a break’, for Felix Baumgartner.
Ilse Grabe is business unit head at media agency Carat.