by Karen Post aka the Branding Diva

A few years ago Dunlop Tire company was introducing a new line of tires. Their audience young men. Their method to create buzz was real buzz (haircuts in the pattern of the tire treads) on the heads of cool, young guys hanging out in public places.

A powerful photo opportunity it was. I saw this image in at least four major pubs and you know both the guys and chicks were talking about this for days.

So how do you land a front page photo placement? Create a compelling visual, invite the right media and the public, and take advantage of trial, sampling and promotional means to reach your target buyers.

Take advantage of current affairs and controversy.
Whether it’s a big sports rivalry in your community or a national story, if you can some how leverage the opportunity with a gigantic memorable visual and a relevant and logical association with your company, the benefits can be significant.

Get a Chase’s calendar of events directory.
This book lists every single holiday there is. Goofy ones like national cupcake day are included, too. Have your employees deliver cupcakes to senior citizens homes.

Break records. Or at least try.
Get the old Guinness book and see what history you can make. Consider starting a new record. It’s far easier to be the first than to break an old record.

Do unusual things in weird places.
When I had my PR firm, we once handled the opening of a new highway called the Beltway 8 in Houston, TX. Along with the traditional PR party stuff, we shut down the freeway the morning it was to open and had 500 roller skaters test the pavement. The headline in the major papers read “great skate on beltway 8.”

The bigger the better.
From giant size (10 feet tall) valentine cookies to a 100 foot piñata suspended by a crane for the opening of a Mexican food restaurant, the media loves big things.

In closing, just remember, try to work in your company signage or uniformed staff into the image in a visible (but, not obnoxious) way. Also, have your own photographer so you can leverage this fun idea on the web and in other venues such as customer correspondance. Most importantly be strategic, be creative, have fun, but make sure it ties into your brand.