Gatorade Promo, Case study FUELING BUZZ by J. Walter Thompson San Juan

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FUELING BUZZ

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Industry Soft Drinks
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Market Puerto Rico
Agency J. Walter Thompson San Juan
Art Director Andrés Justo
Producer Amado Martínez
Released December 2011

Credits & Description

Category: Best Use of Sponsorship
Advertiser: PEPSICO
Product/Service: GATORADE
Agency: JWT SAN JUAN
Vice President/Regional Creative Director: Jaime Rosado (JWT San Juan)
Asociate Creative Director/Copywriter: Lizette Morazzani (JWT San Juan)
Art Director: Andrés Justo (JWT San Juan)
Sound Engineer: Carlos Dávila (JWT San Juan)
Production Agency: Production Agency (JWT San Juan)
Producer: Amado Martínez (Latitude Films)
Director/Editor: Joel Pérez (Latitude Films)
Media placement: Event - Event - 11 December 2011

Summary of the Campaign
The María de los Ángeles Center is an organisation that helps kids with severe mobility issues. On December 11, 2011, they were having a fundraiser, a 5km race, which they asked Gatorade to sponsor.

Coincidentally, the 5km race was on the same day as the Gatorade Contender Triathlon, an event with a big reputation owned by Gatorade, a brand with media power. The Center’s 5km race had no reputation. Gatorade knew the media’s eyes would be on their event so they made 'not overshadowing the charity's 5km race' their objective and came up with a strategy: go beyond a sponsorship and donate media buzz. On December 11, 2011 hundreds of triathletes, including the top ranked men and women, participated in the Gatorade Triathlon.

Reporters followed them as they completed the event. But the athletes didn’t stop here, and neither did the reporters who followed these athletes as they went on to another location for the Maria de los Angeles 5km race. There, the athletes accompanied kids with severe mobility issues for 5 more kilometres. The cameras and reporters followed along. Gatorade’s involvement made the Center’s small 5km race big news. They used their own triathletes and transferred the buzz from event to event.

The Situation
The María de los Ángeles Center is an organisation that helps kids with severe mobility issues. On December 11, 2011, they were having a fundraiser, a 5km race, which they asked Gatorade to sponsor. Coincidentally, the 5km race was on the same day as the Gatorade Contender Triathlon, an event with a big reputation. The biggest triathlon in the country, airs on television, has elite triathletes as main participants, and is backed by Gatorade, a brand capable of attracting massive media coverage. The Center’s 5km race had no reputation.

The Goal
Gatorade was concerned about hogging all the media coverage and leaving the 5km race charity event without participants and without donations so they made 'not overshadowing the charity 5km race' their main objective.

They identified the media (reporters) as their audience, an audience they attracted naturally with the brand. Their main challenge was to find a way to get them to also cover the 5km charity race and make it look as big as the Gatorade Triathlon.

The Strategy
The strategy: go beyond a sponsorship and donate media buzz. Gatorade is a brand that attracts a lot of media. If they use their media power to create buzz and news about the charity 5km it would help the charity 10 times more than donating a few dollars as its sponsor.

Buzz would make the charity known; it would drive people to participate if the event was repeated; it would encourage donations; and it would bring a small event into the spotlight.

Also a product like Gatorade known for fuelling athletes would be known for fueling more: in this case fueling the media to look at this small charity event and fuelling a small charity event to achieve more than it thought possible.

Execution
On December 11, 2011 hundreds of triathletes, including the top ranked men and women triathletes, participated in the Gatorade Contender Triathlon.

At 7am TV cameras and reporters followed these athletes as they pushed their bodies to the limit and swam 1.9km, rode 90.1km, and ran 21.1km until they reached the finish line. But amazingly the athletes didn’t stop here, and more importantly, neither did the reporters who followed these athletes as they went on to another location for their second event: the Maria de los Angeles 5km Race. There, the athletes accompanied kids with severe mobility issues for an additional 5km, having the cameras and reporters cover every step of the way.

All of this was also filmed and posted the next day on Gatorade’s Facebook page where it was seen by Gatorade’s numerous followers and shared, further spreading the buzz about this small event.

Documented Results
Gatorade’s involvement managed to make the María de los Angeles Center’s small 5km race event big news. They managed to transfer the media buzz from one event to the other using the triathlon’s athletes which resulted in the 5km race making the front page of the country’s #1 newspaper, El Nuevo Día, and in coverage from other major newspapers and TV news channels.

The kids became stars themselves since they actively formed part of the race thanks to the assistance the triathletes provided.

Gatorade also achieved to convert this action into a single big media-generating event which will launch next year.

The video was shared via mail and Facebook managing to direct attention towards the Center. In the end a product and brand known for fuelling athletes fuelled much more.