Final: Felix Baumgartner Red Bull Ad
On October 14, 2012 Felix Baumgartner plunges from 128,100 feet from the stratosphere, reaching speeds of 833mph, and becomes the first man the break the speed of sound in freefall. This could not have been achieved if it was not carefully planned by his crew, and the sponsorship of Red Bull. The idea began in 2005 and accumulated to the final breathtaking jump in 2012. The feed was broadcasted live on YouTube and had the academic and public community on their feet gasping for breath. The Stratos mission was a success and Felix Baumgartner went down in space and daredevil history. Below is an ad I have created using an image captured from the mission. I will examine the ad and show how the ad can invoke a sense of courage and heroism.
The ad features Felix Baumgartner standing facing forward at the edge of the pressurized capsule before his descent to Earth. In previous Red Bull commercials, cartoon characters are seen flying in the sky with Red Bull emphasizing that their energy drink gives the person wings. All the more befitting for Red Bull to sponsor the Stratos mission emphasizing that their brand in energy drink gives the person more than just wings, but the courage to push the limits of one’s personal goals. The ad has inherent drama where the viewer can identify and imagine that they’re in Felix’s shoes before the jump. We all know that Felix succeeds in the end and gives the viewer a sense of relief. Also, the story has added value from the quote of Robert F. Kennedy stating: “Only those who dare to fail greatly, can achieve greatly”. His older brother John F. Kennedy (35th President of the United States), advocated space exploration and civil rights for all American citizens. Likewise, Robert F. Kennedy was a civil rights activist and stood up for his beliefs. The quote challenges the viewer to take the step towards the edge of their comfort zone and challenge their beliefs and goals. Furthermore, Red Bull positions their brand of being the best energy drink through associating the drink, mission, and Felix as the catalyst for achieving great feats with the view of being on top of the world. It gives the viewer the permission to believe. In addition, the color red is used in the ad along with the branding of Red Bull because red symbolizes vitality, power, and vigor. It is used to excite in increasing the breaths taken and pulse rate of the viewer. In addition, red arouses the appetite to consume the product and is seen as a color for strength. Moreover, red is used for to symbolize speed and makes sense to use it when the goal for Red Bull is to be associated in breaking a freefall world record. The Red Bull logo is retold over and over throughout the ad—enforcing Red Bull’s triumph of individual will over physical boundaries. Thus, Red Bull elicits emotional attachment of courage and heroism through the power of storytelling.
PBS. (2004). The persuaders. Retrieved April 8, 2013 from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/persuaders/
Perry, C. (2011). Advertising in action. Retrieved April 8, 2013 from https://sites.google.com/site/mediapsych724e/docs-and-articles
Stratos, Red Bull. (2012). World record jump. Retrieved April 8, 2013 from http://www.redbullstratos.com/gallery/?mediaId=media1900707044001
All images are taken from Google search.