Space Bowl – How Red Bull created a new marketing space

Axe Astronaut

What a spectacle! I always find it quite impressive to see this exercise in marketing megalomania in action. After watching all the commercials from last night’s super bowl, one thing really stuck with me – the use of space. Marketing’s last frontier. Or not any more? Well at least there seemed to be so much of it, that afterwards it was hard to tell, which brand really made a lasting impression – in space.

Obviously space is not a new advertising idea and apparently space ads at the super bowl have some sort of tradition, but with just a bit more than 3 months since Red Bull’s space stunt, this buildup of space related ideas seemed a little too obvious. Is this a coincidence or an example of the predictability of how marketing decisions are made? I mean everyone working in this industry can imagine the discussion that were going on: “Did you see that Red Bull thing, that was awesome, we definitely need to do something in space.” Well sort of, but just have a look at this little space ad collection from Super Bowl 2013:

First of all there was the Axe Apollo space academy (giving a normal bloke the chance to get some Baumgartner kind of fame). Of course nothing beats an astronaut.


Then there was this weird Kia Space Babies thing. Now at least we know that babies come from Babylandia. Right.


Another car commercial – of course the son wishes to be an astronaut. What else?


Even that E*Trade baby had a short trip to space (definitely my favourite spot – Boom!)


About that lasting impression – Samsung got a lot right, including the space theme. They couldn’t resist with a little pun, summarising the whole marketing dilemma in a sad but true way, as Seth Rogen pitches one of his ideas to the bored Samsung marketing guy: “Space! We can send them into the galaxy, with the galaxy.”


Ah and apparently the crew of the ISS watched the super bowl from space as well. It looks like Red Bull have not only raised the bar in terms of creating impressive branded content, they made space aspirational again. And while the space territory is getting slightly overused, the eternal marketing question remains: What’s next?



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About aschauerte

Marketing, Media, Communications and Business Strategist.

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