PR beyond the stunt
Of course, it’s fantastic – fantastical even – watching Australian motorbike stunt rider, Robbie Maddison successfully jump 29 metres up onto the Arc de Triomphe in front of Paris Las Vegas before descending a 24 metre drop off the monument to return safely to ground level. Red Bull paid the Aussie $2m to do this stunt. After he finished, he said that he wouldn’t do it again for $10m. For those of you who have never held their breath for the full one minute and 31 seconds, here it is again: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLejkyXbJlc
You could, in fact, be forgiven for forgetting that Red Bull sells more than five billion cans of soft drink a year. For every logo you see on a can of energy drink, there must be another five plastered on screaming Formula One cars, upside-down motorcycles, stunt planes and skateboards. Red Bull has almost single-handedly created the energy drink market we know today, piggybacking on the rise of extreme sports to get its brand out there … and delivering some truly memorable marketing stunts along the way. Obviously, PR can work wonders for those who seek publicity for publicity’s sake.
But actually, that is the easy part of public relations. The real value of PR is using it to solve a “real-life” marketing situation for a real brand, product, service or organisation. PR can work for any and every industry. Basically, any organisation or individual with a message to deliver, or a goal to achieve, can benefit. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a creative of unusual product to gain publicity, you just need a creative idea that:
- is newsworthy; and
- meets the marketing message.
Creative PR, with proper execution, can work wonders. Every product or service, no matter how seemingly mundane, contains a PR “hook” or angle if you think creatively.
Top tip: make a graph of your sales per week. If it is smooth and your sales are consistent then your marketing is probably steady and continual. But, if the sales curve has peaks and troughs, you may need to increase the frequency of marketing communication to smooth out the bumps.
PR is a good resource to have in your arsenal, as it can help you to get your message out on a continual basis, and eliminate those slumps.