Red Bull is more than an energy drink maker – it is a huge publishing brand too. Their publishing prowess rivals that of major publishing companies with content that is extraordinary and extremely popular. Red Bull does not advertise a drink, it advertises a lifestyle. It is now being considered the shining beacon in the advertising world. One look at their website’s homepage and you will be able to the see the “Just Epic” tab.
Clicking on this tab leads you to high-quality videos, images and content about extreme sports – surfing, skateboarding, parkour, etc. There are no blatant promotional messages for the drink, in fact – a person who does not know what the Red Bull energy drink is will be totally justified in thinking that Red Bull is an extreme sports magazine. Granted that on the suits of the athletes in the videos, the logo of Red Bull is visible as they are the sponsors, but there is not mention of the energy drink.
However, has this style of promotion hurt the brand’s sales? Has their style of advertising confused the masses? This does not seem to be true – Red Bull has captured almost 40% of the energy drinks market and is the most recognizable energy drink brand worldwide. As one representative from the company states – the best marketing strategy that has worked for Red Bull is the fact that they have not actually published any of their strategies.
With Red Bull – the energy drink is not the point. The brand has been able to implement the golden rule in content marketing – storytelling. Content marketing is not about putting up billboards and bombarding the public with commercials. Instead Red Bull offers valuable content to people and in turn people associate the brand with good things. Instead of selling the drink, the brand tells stories.
Most recently, the brand released the Red Bull Stratos campaign where BASE jumper Felix Baumgartner successfully completed a space jump. Very early on in – when red bull was founded – its founder Dietrich Mateschitz realized that packaging was everything. From the iconic blue and silver cans of the energy drink to the high-energy lifestyle it promotes resulted in people associating Red Bull with a lifestyle they wanted.
Red Bull Media House
The brand is a content machine and its media wing makes this possible. Red Bull Media House was created in Europe and slowly gained a foothold in the U.S. The media house is the one responsible for the print, online and television campaigns and is even a production house with its own record label. It publishes a sports magazine that has a readership comparable to that of Sport Illustrated. Most importantly, the brand offers most of its content to viewers for free, even though the content is very high-end.
The content creators at the media house are journalists who are never asked to promote the brand in their stories. Their unique content marketing style has made them a leader in content marketing and has removed this brand from obscurity in less than 10 years.