|Felix cruising down back to earth from space|
When dare devil Felix Baumgartner ascended to the edge of space donning a RedBull branded pressurized capsule suspended beneath a giant helium balloon many did not know that this was a PR opportunity that the manufacturers of Red Bull had spotted and decided to pursue.
Just like in fashion where the daring always end up as the fashion trend setters, A PR professional should be daring and ready to take some risks in order to make the brand to stand out from the rest.
Red Bull would have totally lost it had Felix’s Capsule exploded into flames while in space. Someone would have been question on the cost of funding that historic jump and many would have been fired because of that campaign.
Below are some of the reasons why that historic jump could not have been successful here in Kenya because of our PR approaches of always playing safe and keeping off unexplored waters.
“We do not have budgets for that campaign” would have been the first excuse to be given by the ever defensive brand managers.
“Our CEO is not a fan of extreme sports and thus he is likely not to support that event.” Would have come from the ‘very loyal’ employees in the marketing department.
“We cannot partner with “So & So’ because they are likely to hog all the publicity from us. If we have to do it then we want to do it alone.”
“We are not willing to sponsor the project because of security reasons; we don’t want our brand to look like we are interfering with the government security agencies especially with the terrorists threatening to strike our country.
“Many of our customers do not live in the open arid areas (assuming that the jump would have been held in a sparsely populated area) thus they will not be able to experience or rather see the jump.” While we all saw the jump being beamed by all leading media houses across the world.
“How long will the jump last? Are we likely to achieve any media coverage bearing in mind the short duration that the jump will last?
Finally, the Sales Director would have thrown in their ‘usual line’ how much sales are we likely to accrue from this activity.
All said and done, those are the PR excuses that would have denied Kenyans the chance to witness the world record breaking 128,089 free falling jump that had a top speed of 834mph (1,342km/h) thus breaking the sound barrier.