Oct 15, 2012 at 01:12 PM
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Marketers React To Red Bull's Record Breaking Stunt

Yesterday, Red Bull pulled off what is likely one of the greatest sponsored expeditions ever. "Fearless" Felix Baumgartner, after countless delays, finally achieved his 24-mile freefall from 120,000+ feet, in the process breaking the sound barrier and the record for highest ever freefall jump. With Red Bull's marketing machine operating on all cylinders, the energy drink also shattered several social media records. YouTube's live stream at one point before just before the leap, had over 8 million concurrent viewers, more than 16 times the previous record for concurrent streams which AllThingsD reports was 500,000.

Even more important than the exposure was the message. For a $5 billion+ business built on high energy stunts, the marketing message, with the world watching, couldn't have been more on point. Other brands that benefited as Stratos partners included watchmaker, Zenith, and Riedel Communications.

In case you missed it, the incredible jump...

Here's how several marketing folks reacted to the mission...

"The biggest trend in the last 10 years, and the social internet side of things has merely accelerated it, is that creating your own content has absolutely moved to the top of the agenda. The hackneyed old tickets, hospitality and perimeter boarding model is being left behind," Tim Crow, CEO of sponsorship agency Synergy told the Guardian.

“The stunt is almost a perfect link to Red Bull’s slogan and brand values, so I think consumers will definitely make the link (between the jump and the brand). Red Bull has successfully marketed itself as a supporter of extreme events… but they’ll have to go to great lengths to top this,” Bruce Kaider of Sponsorship Australasia told B&T.

“The sponsorship transcended sports and entertainment into Pop Culture, hitting new consumers that Red Bull does not usually capture, and on a global scale. The value for Red Bull is in the tens of millions of dollars of global exposure, and Red Bull Stratos will continue to be talked about and passed along socially for a very long time," Ben Sturner of Leverage told Forbes.

“This is very in line with the Red Bull brand, which has established itself as a sponsor of extreme athletes and events, and has a heritage in flying, through its partnerships with aeronautic teams as well as its popular “Flugtag” (Flying Day) events, featuring human-powered vehicles,” Jim Andrews, senior VP at sponsorship consultancy IEG told Forbes.

"Felix Baumgartner webcast brought Red Bull over $2.11 Million in branding value on You Tube" Front Row Analytics tweeted.

"Seriously, Red Bull got millions in "exposure" for their Stratos #sponsorship? What is this, 1992? What are the real returns?" Kim Skildum-Reid tweeted.