Red Bull Social Media Marketing

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Red Bull – #Summer is here
Prepared for: Social Media Marketing, GMA 2012, ESSEC Business School Prepared by: Ekaterina Hadjipetkova Date: 18.08.2012

1. OVERVIEW 1.1 Company profile Red Bull GmbH. is a privately held, Austrian based company operating in the energy drink business. Red Bull GmbH engages in the marketing and sales of energy drinks in more than 160 countries. Red Bull is the beverage for athletes, professionals, students - short for everybody who needs some energy - in Europe, the Americas, Australasia, Africa and Japan. Today, Red Bull is selling more than 4 billion cans with a product portfolio of only 4 beverages (Fig.1 Appendix). 1.2 Marketing strategy 1.2.1 Overview Red Bull is known to be an innovative brand not only because of its unique selling proposition but also because of the way it had chosen to market its products more than twenty-five years ago. Initially, Red Bull distributed free cases of the drinks to college students in an attempt at viral advertising. This strategy was wildly successful, resulting in the rapid proliferation of sales. Red Bull has since become known for its sleek marketing targeted at young urban professionals through various sports and entertainment based advertising campaigns. Even today, Red Bull still heavily relies on viral marketing and has successfully adopted a winning web 2.0 marketing strategy. Its focal marketing message, “Red bull gives you wings” fits well with visual content of athletes flying through the air on bikes, snowboards and motorbikes and serves as the brand's primary content generator. 1.2.2 Content marketing The success of Red Bull marketing campaigns is not serendipity. Unlike many «young brands» with a sporadic and rather chaotic social media presence, Red Bull manages to impeccably translate its brand DNA into off-line events and on-line initiatives and also to smartly interrelate those. - Off-line events: Credibility is very important when building a brand image and, thus the type of events your brand is associated with, is of a primary importance. The main purpose of all

sponsorship programs is to make consumers see the product. However, this is just the immediate effect of the initiative. Subsequently, consumers are expected to associate the product with the positive emotions they experienced at that particular event and thus, re-experience it through an actual purchase of the product. In the case of Red Bull, we observe the phenomena of the «cool» effect: the name of the company has become synonymous with the extreme sports lifestyle and, thus, the sole act of consuming a Red Bull is considered «as cool as snowboarding/motorbiking itself». - On-line initiatives: Off-line initiatives are a great way to build brand awareness but they are also a great tool to create additional interactive content on-line. Red Bull does not only sponsor various sports initiatives and athletes but it also proves an active role in these events. Platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter and Youtube allow any brand to maintain an on-going conversation with its audience but it also provides the opportunity to involve a brand's fan base into off-line events that take place thousands kilometers away from their homes. 2. RED BULL & SOCIAL MEDIA 2.1 Overview Red Bull is the perfect example of an overwhelming, active and coherent on-line presence. Not surprisingly, Mashable ranked them among the five most engaging brands online. Red Bull is one of the most popular brands on the web with active Red Bull Youtube channel (more than 317 000 000 visits), a corporate Twitter account (more than 700 000 followers), Red Bull Facebook page (more than 29 000 000 “likes”) and even a Red Bull Media House1 (Fig.2 Appendix). Through its engagement in various sports initiatives extreme lifestyle events, Red Bull incessantly generates quality content that transforms into incredible marketing campaigns – “GivesWings”, “The Art of Flight”, “Awesome Humans”, “Stash” and many more (see...
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