Lego's latest stunt has Olympic timing
Date of webcast: 10 July 2012 09:15 GMT
The opening of the Shard and the coming of the Olympic Games combined rather splendidly for Team GB mini figure rights-holder, Lego.
The canny Danes managed to use the first as a hook to once again promote the latter in their latest stunt: the construction of the world’s tallest ever tower of the bricks.
The remarkable thing is that this stunt is hardly new. A swift search across the web will throw up tens of “world’s tallest Lego towers”. From Brazil to Seoul, in fact this is a stunt that has been pulled more times than most.
Why this one works
Let’s be honest, repeating the same schtick time and again rarely elicits positive feelings from the world’s (or indeed the nation’s, let’s not get over-ambitious here) news desks and editors.
So why is it that this one cut the mustard, where other brands pulling the same trick time and again would be given rather shorter shrift?
Maybe it’s the PR pull of the little figures that helps them on their way. As has previously been observed in this column, Lego seems to have managed to carry off the notion with the media that they are merely a generic brick, rather than a brand with commercial motivations for their stuntery and habit of self-promotion.
More than likely the timing helped – coinciding as the campaign-ette did with the opening of the Shard as Europe’s tallest tower (those who have watched the video above will note the Lego edifice’s striking resemblance to the aforementioned construction).
The Olympic reference should not go over-looked: the tower of bricks was topped by minifigs from the brand’s Team GB range of faintly athletic-looking characters and there are no greater heroes right now than our boys and girls in track and field.
More than likely though, it’s a confection of all of those factors – alongside a dedicated media relations team and a brand that most of all commands the affections of news editors themselves.
Those motivations combined mean that each of those editors is well aware that their own readers are eager to follow Lego’s latest antics and more than happy as a result to give over their pages to supporting a seemingly insatiable demand for their latest exploits.
Lego’s is a neat trick to pull. Those in charge of other brands would be well advised not to try to emulate their ability to pull the same trick time and again, however. When it comes to achieving that feat, Lego stands in a league of its own.
James Gordon-MacIntosh is a managing partner at Hope&Glory PR and from time-to-time pens Spinning Around, a blog that he describes as “thinking out loud”