It wasn’t our day.
We were told our planned schedule of newsletters, webinars, and workshops was no longer acceptable. We had to cut our planned internal communications by 80%.
This happens. And it’s not enjoyable. I felt, and still feel, a large range of negative emotions from anger to fear to shame to frustration and so on.
But then I read a story.
Red Bull, the energy drink, wanted to grow their market share in London. But they had a very small budget. Therefore they could not afford the traditional advertising methods. So they got creative. They began gathering up used Red Bull cans from the trash. Then one night, they placed thousands of empty, partially squashed Red Bull cans all over London’s rubbish bins. Not inside the bins, but on top and beside the bins giving the impression that millions of Londoners had been drinking Red Bull. And thereby playing on peer pressure and fear of being left out. The result? Sales surged.
Now, I am not a fan of Red Bull nor am I a fan of littering. However, I am a fan a creatively and thinking differently. Some call the Red Bull approach guerrilla marketing – coined by Jay Levinson.
And marketing is not just about selling people stuff. It can also be about promoting ideas and change. So while we may not the traditional channels to promote digital literacy and ethics, we’ll go guerrilla. I have no idea what that looks like yet, but it won’t involve trash.