The Hottest PR Stunts of July

Whatever the weather, good PR stunts usually come in three varieties: Smart ones. Attention-grabbing ones. And then there are the absolutely out-there ones. From augmented reality cereal boxes to petite pizzas for bees, these are our favourite PR campaigns of the summer.

McDonald’s gets bitchy in Brussels

The long-held feud between McDonald’s and Burger King certainly didn’t pipe down for the sake of the piping-hot July weather. Oh no. This time McDonald’s fired shots with a look-at-me-sized billboard beside BK’s new restaurant in the centre of Brussels. It follows the bitchy barb Burger King made back in May, with its hilarious clown-free parties campaign.

The gargantuan trolling sign featured the brand’s logo, refashioned to look like a crown, as well as the words “Served by a king, or served as a king?” – a dig at the fact that, unlike McDonalds, Burger King doesn’t bring food directly to diners’ tables. Always one to take the bait, Burger King responded with a poster stating: “Why try to roast if you can’t even flame grill?” Ouch. Handbags at dawn!

Kellogg’s ends boring breakfasts with AR

If your kids enjoy a doodle over a breakfast, then Kellogg’s nifty breakfast time activity will be right up your street. Partnering  with Crayola, the brand has stripped the colour from its Australian packaging, allowing kids to get creative with their crayons and ‘colour and win’.

Once they’ve customised their cereal boxes, a downloadable app then allows them to bring the characters on their cereal boxes to life, using ‘augmented reality’. Kellogg’s Felicha Hogan, senior shopper activation manager, said, “In addition to the interactive AR experience, as an added surprise and delight, Crayola prize packs will be won daily. We’re excited to be bringing families together through creative activities on pack and can’t wait to see their artwork come to life”.

Papa Johns is now bee-friendly

Now the world realises just how important bees are, everyone from little old ladies to big brands are looking out for them. And Papa John’s is no exception. In July the popular pizzeria launched the ‘Bee Sting’, a miniature pizza made specifically for bees. While the body-to-wing ratio of a bee suggests they probably shouldn’t make a habit of takeaways, the 1-inch diameter treat is sure to make their cheat days a bit more indulgent. The ‘Beezza’ comes topped with Amarillo chilli, wild flowers and local pollen – finished with a drizzle of honey to sweeten the deal.

While it’s not available to purchase, the petite pizza was created to draw attention to Papa John’s support of the Bumblebee Conservation Trust. In partnership with the Trust, the pizzeria also gave out free wildflower seeds to its social media followers, in the hope they’d plant them and make their gardens more bee-friendly. Bee-rilliant.

Netherland’s bee stops

The forward-thinking city of Utrecht also spared a thought for its bees this July. Organizers topped 316 bus shelters with a pretty bed of plants, giving bees a great stop-off to refresh and feed – or a great place to wait for the bus, should they be making their way back from Papa John’s in a food coma. The little roof gardens feature the ability to store rainwater, as well as lots of sedum plants – apparently irresistible to honey and bumble bees alike.

While it was very much a conservation effort, the initiative was also designed with air pollution in mind, since sedum plants function as natural air purifiers. It all coincides with the city’s plans to introduce 55 new electric buses, powered by electricity generated by wind turbines.

Out and proud penguins

And finally. In celebration of Pride 2019, London Zoo decided to give its beloved gay penguin couple centre stage, with a ‘some penguins are gay, get over it’ campaign, and a party to honour the pair. The long-term couple, Ronnie and Reggie, first hit the limelight back in 2015, when they adopted an abandoned egg and subsequently raised a chick together.

The zoo’s spokesperson said: “The pair shared parenting duties of their chick, Kyton, until he fledged the nest. They remain as strong as ever and are often found snuggled up in their nest box together. The duo share their home with 91 other penguins, including fellow same-sex couples Nadja and Zimmer, and Dev and Martin.”

For your own out-of-the-box PR stunts, get in contact. 

Image: © Office of Utrecht Mayor

Want to join the PR revolution? Call me now on +44 (0)77604 70309

I get you into the places that matter

The Times
Financial Times
Evening Standard