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Creating attention for your brand in public – a ‘stunted’ idea or a PR winner?

One of the strategies that marketers and PR companies use to achieve both media and consumer attention for a brand is to create a public stunt.  While some well executed (and usually amply funded stunts) can work brilliantly, others seem to fall flat on their face.

When we are assessing whether a stunt is the most appropriate option for our clients we consider the all important factors such as the objective of the stunt and the budget that will be required to create the desired attention.  If these two elements are in synergy then the fun begins as we put on our creative and logistic hats and get to work.

We usually suggest to clients that the appropriate budget for a well produced stunt is $10K.  These expenses generally include promotional people, council permits, materials required (marquee, music etc) and sampling materials.

One of our clients is Sweet William who has just launched a chocolate MUD spread, (contains 60 percent less sugar than its competitors). The team at Sweet William really wanted to do some sort of stunt, however due to a limited budget weren’t keen on allocating too much money to the exercise.

So yesterday a male model (and a damn good sport) was painted in the MUD spread. He walked around the city in the early morning pedestrian traffic wearing nothing but the mud that was painted on his body, black speedos, MUD branded gumboots and hat. He attracted the curious attention of passers-by and was even licked by one woman at a bus stop.  Check out the pics on WordStorm’s facebook page.

The objective was to attract consumer’s attention (big tick there) and the attention of at least one media outlet – pics will be published in mX today. So overall the objectives were achieved and the budget was under $2K.

Some more commonly used themes for stunts include creating a Guinness World Record, creating a ‘scene’ in a public area for example using sand and other materials, or creating a branded party scene.

As you can imagine the above examples would have cost far more than $10K, but in each case the stunts received a great deal of media coverage and exposure.

Can you recall any stunts that really got your attention?  Do you think stunts are a good idea or just a waste of precious cash?

What do you think?

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Monica Rosenfeld

Monica Rosenfeld

After an extensive career in TV journalism including Channel 9’s Getaway and A Current Affair, Monica Rosenfeld established WordStorm PR in 2000. Monica’s experience at Channel 9 was invaluable as it allowed her to set up a PR agency that clearly understood the day-to-day workings of a busy media office. WordStorm PR represents a range of consumer, lifestyle, food, health, hospitality and B2B clients. With her extensive experience in public relations, Monica’s blog will focus on helping business owners to effectively communicate to the media and consumers to get their brand noticed.

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