Here at Motive we’re always coming up with new, creative and interesting ways to promote our clients and we love to see when brands think a little outside the box too.
It’s increasingly difficult for businesses to get the attention they want amongst all the noise online in an increasingly digital age, but trying something different and taking a risk can reap major rewards when it comes to media attention and backlinks.
An eye-catching stunt has the potential to go viral and quickly get major outlets talking about your company– here are my four favourites of 2019:
1. BurgerKing – Election Whopper
How do you get a burger pictured by major newspapers while the election campaign is dominating the news agenda,without paying a penny in advertising?
By poking fun at the Prime Minister’s Brexit claims, which have been disputed by opponents, and imitating Vote Leave’s stunt ahead of the 2016 EU referendum.
Fast food giant Burger King put its flagship Whopper burger on the side of a big, red London bus just like the famous £350 million per week NHS funding figure and used the pun to make the link.
The company drove it around Parliament Square to get images that were printed in the top national newspapers including the Financial Times and widely circulated on social media.
2. PaddyPower – Save Our Shirt
Never ones to be shy, Paddy Power caused an almighty stir when launching their sponsorship of Huddersfield Town for the 2019/20 season.
The provocative brand sent the team out for a friendly at Rochdale with a stupidly large logo plastered across their kit, flouting FA regulations and annoying supporters.
It managed to get the controversial betting company and lowly Championship team major coverage on the BBC, ITV, SKY and most major newspapers and sports sites.
Fortunately, it was all a one-off hoax aimed at mocking the modern commercialisation of football and the real shirt for the season is sponsorship free.
That got them a second round of mass media attention, the fans love it and the lack of logo actually makes them stand out against rival teams and sponsors every week.
The Save Our Shirt ‘unsponsoring’ campaign also includes Motherwell in Scotland, Newport County in Wales.
3. Greggs– Vegan Sausage Roll
The pastry giants did so well in 2019 that they’ve paid each of their staff a £300 bonus.
Greggs’ successful year was kick-started on the 3rd of January with the launch of a VeganSausage Roll to celebrate Veganuary.
A slick video was uploaded on twitter parodying an Apple product launch, annotated with precise measurements, and notes about user interface and optimal pastry flake resolution.
It’s had well over five million views and managed to hook the attention of Piers Morgan, generating viral coverage on social media as well as countless mentions by mainstream media.
The ‘next generation of sausage roll technology’ proved so popular that it’s remained a staple of their stores’ menus across the country.
4. Haford Hardware – Christmas Advert
Each festive season sees anticipation build in advance of big brands’ premiering their Christmas adverts.
John Lewis usually come up with popular content – in 2019 the star was Excitable Edgar the Dragon – whilst ALDI reused Kevin the Carrot and Walkers spent big money to get Mariah Carey onboard.
All of the major retailers release a tailored Christmas campaign each year, so it can be hard for smaller,family run shops, like the Haford Hardware store in Rhayader, Powys, to garner views.
But the Welsh wizards managed to conjure up a video that generated millions of views on YouTube, Twitter and across digital media.
It featured a day in the life of an employee, only the star of the show was a young boy – encouraging viewers to ‘be a kid this Christmas’ and driving traffic to their website.
© MOTIVE 2020.