A marketing strategy that really seems to have changed an entire company and industry is that of the makers of the energy drink, Red Bull. The energy drink is the most popular in the world with sales of more than 4.6 billion cans in 2011. Red Bull has found success by transforming themselves from an energy drink company to a full on extreme sports publishing brand. The company sponsors the world’s largest extreme sports competitions ranging from skiing and snowboarding to motor-sports, wakeboarding and cliff diving. Last year Red Bull received worldwide attention for sponsoring an event where a man skydived from space. See the clip here:
Red Bull has achieved strong success because of its broad and encompassing IMC plan that is aimed at its target market of males aged 18-35. Red Bull utilizes what their marketers call “content marketing.” This means that they convey their message to young adult males by sponsoring and providing content that they think is cool. Besides holding extreme sports competitions, Red Bull also has its hand in art shows, music, and video games. They have hired rappers such as Eminem to represent them. Red Bull also owns close to 15 professional soccer teams throughout the world (including the MLS team New York Red Bulls) who prominently display the company’s logo as the team’s mascot.
Red Bull is a great example of how company’s are changing the way they market themselves. Red Bull has gone from being an energy drink brand to a leader in extreme sports and high profile event sponsorship. By focusing solely on the image of the brand and almost ignoring the drink in its marketing tactics, Red Bull was able to become a cultural icon of the energy drink and extreme sports.
I am personally a big fan of Red Bull because of all that they do for some of my favorite sports snowboarding and skiing. They provided Travis Rice the funding and opportunity to produce “Art of Flight” which is my favorite and one of the best snowboarding movies ever.