How Red Bull Rewrote the Book on Sports Marketing

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If there has ever been a commercial that I love to watch over and over again, it has been Red Bull commercials. This twenty-eight year old company has gone from sponsoring an Austrian football team, to being one of the largest sponsors in the sports industry. I would like to dive deeper into why and how Red Bull has developed such a powerful brand image in such a short time.

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Getting a Solid Start

Red Bull began their “crusade” into America and the sports industry by fermenting themselves into motocross, skateboarding, surfing and BMX. After this, Red Bull quickly began gaining traction. Every year they kept hitting more and more milestones. Their sponsored teams and athletes would accomplish more and greater things. Red Bull saw that there was a niche for them to inject themselves into, and that was action sports. Soon, however, it progressed to much more than just being sponsors. It became about being involved.

Red Bull Flies into the Action

In 1992, Red Bull began the FlugTag. This was competition to see who’s homemade flying machine would achieve flight. In 1997, they started Red Bull Cliff Diving. In 1999, Red Bull put on the Red Bull King of the Air Kiteboarding event. The list continues on and on about the events that Red Bull has created. They have constantly pushed people to get more involved in these sports and provided athletes ways to compete and events to go to. They have even progressed far beyond starting competitive events. They have broken records.

Breaking Records and Staking Claim

Whether it’s breaking a record for longest free fall in 2012 or the record pit stop in 2013, Red Bull has always staked their claim. Red Bull has not only been about sponsoring teams and players or creating events, they have been about pushing the limits. This shows through all of the records that they have consistently broken. This is not because they find the athletes that are already about to break a record and sponsor them. This is because they find the best athletes, sponsor them, and push them to do even greater things.

Marketing the Feats of Greatness

While Red Bull may sponsor and push these athletes to be the best they can be, what is that other than a cool record and title to hold? It is actually much more than just a record or a title. Red Bull makes these amazing feats into stories that inspire others and make people want to do great things. They do this through video postings. They film and document their achievements so well that they can share them with the whole world. Generally, these are the commercials that get seen by the public. They do not advertise commercials about their product, they advertise commercials about doing great things. Red Bull has become much more than a sponsor or a good energy drink. It has become a movement. A movement to be better, faster, and stronger. A movement to be the elite. A movement to achieve great things. This is why Red Bull is the master of marketing.

This blog post was written by Samford University student Carter Krohn.

References

http://energydrink-us.redbull.com/red-bull-history

http://www.thesportsbusinessexchange.com/2013/11/how-red-bull-reinvented-sports-marketing/

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