Inside Red Bull Canada’s Digital Strategy

Red Bull is doing a lot in digital marketing, especially from a content-marketing perspective. The company is best known for its video content, music showcases and celebrity blogs. Red Bull Media uses content to market to consumers in a way that does not feel like marketing at all. Its content never mentions the words “Red Bull” or even “energy drink.”

Red Bull Canada recently made its first foray into mobile marketing for a promotion it did around the 2012 Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship. The company used mobile banner ads that ran via airG to drive signups. The results were so good that the brand is now looking at mobile as an add-on to all of its promotions.

Digiday interviewed Jason Quehl, director of marketing at Red Bull Canada, about the company’s unique approach to content marketing, mobile, video and social media. He said that everything that Red Bull does focuses on giving consumers the most engaging Red Bull experience through premium, controlled environments.

Is mobile proving to be a good direct-response vehicle for Red Bull?
The 2012 Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship was the first time where Red Bull Canada had engaged with mobile in such a strong manner. With the help of Tagga Media, we had a registration page developed, and airG was driving prospective registrants to it on mobile. The results were fantastic. Over 10 percent of the total registrants for the event came from mobile, and over 27 percent of the event participants were engaged with the event and the Red Bull brand during the championship.

Mobile is a new exciting platform, and we are eager to be trying new strategies with it. The strategy and the success metrics for each campaign are different, but as long as the goals are clear and mobile fits as a medium, Red Bull Canada will always consider it.

How does Red Bull rely on social media platforms (which platforms?), and how is the messaging different on each, while still sticking to the brand voice?
Red Bull as a global brand uses many social media platforms to keep in touch with our fans and consumer base. In Canada, we use platforms like Twitter to communicate with thousands of our followers every day, but we are also constantly looking for new emerging platforms such as airG where it brings Red Bull a niche audience base only on mobile. Messaging for each platform can be different, and on airG, for example, our primary goals was acquire registrants for the 2012 Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship followed by building brand and event awareness.

There’s been a trend where brands are acting like content curators, and Red Bull is ahead of the game here. Can you talk about your content-marketing strategy and why its unique?
The global media activities of Red Bull have been growing year by year, and over the course of the last two decades Red Bull has built an enormous collection of content. This stock of material was the source to launch the Red Bull Media House in 2007 to run our own channels and at the same time to serve the media world with even more exciting content than ever before.

The Red Bull Media House operates a TV station and one of the most innovative online consumer platforms. It prints one of the biggest magazines in the world and launches mobile operator services. It produces documentaries, movies and even music all around the world. All that makes the Red Bull Media House the center of planning, producing, managing and distributing Red Bull content worldwide. It has access to the whole Red Bull network, including more than 500 athletes, numerous artists and opinion leaders.

The target is to provide content and channels of outstanding quality to excite consumers and especially partners who want to benefit. Red Bull Media House is the center of the global Red Bull media network. It offers a unique variety of media content in lifestyle, fun and sports. The Red Bull Media House and its network generate high-quality media content from all over the world. Distributable and partly licensable contents are mainly moving images assets and still images which the Red Bull Media House offers in a huge variety: from news cuts to edited premium assets, the Red Bull Media House provides material of recent events in outstanding productions.

What are your digital priorities in 2012 and why?
Our mission in digital media is to offer the most engaging Red Bull experience through premium, controlled environments targeted to the largest audience of our target consumers across all digital media touch points. Our core objectives in digital media are to attract new consumers across digital mediums and to increase brand loyalty by leveraging the numerous innovative tools that digital provides.