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PR Stunt Watch: The Australian Tourist Board invite Andy Milne to the Women's World Cup by One Green Bean plus a shout out to Talker Taylor!

This week’s stunt watch pays homage to my favourite campaign of the Women’s World Cup.

Obviously, I can’t mention The Queen’s Header – the UK’s first pub dedicated exclusively to showing women’s football – delivered by Just Eat and Mischief. Some columnists would use their platform to shamelessly plug how their activation solved the issue of early morning kick-offs, sold out every day it opened, drowned in earned coverage and was attended – organically - by so many influencers, we had to turn some away…

…But I wouldn’t do that, so instead I will focus on a stunt that really made me laugh.

For context, I have a serious soft spot for One Green Bean. Kat Thomas is an OG and James Thomlinson is one of the rarest geezers in PR – but more importantly than that, they are very good at doing funny and their latest work with the Australian Tourist Board ticked that box in very thick ink.

The gag was simple, they invited Andy Milne to come and watch the women’s World Cup. For the uninitiated, Andy Milne is an England super fan who went viral during the Qatar World Cup for essentially having a funny face. He was a lookalike for about a million people, including ex-England manager Steve McLaren, but his cult legend status truly took off when it was revealed he’s just an all-round lovely bloke.

At first, I thought OGB might have fallen into the sports marketing taboo of using male football culture to promote female football culture – but the surrounding details absolve them of all perceived sin. Andy is a genuine Lionesses fan, he’s been to watch them over land and sea too and in his previous life as a teacher, he set up his school’s first girl's team and his daughter is living in Australia. It genuinely made sense that the Australian Tourist Board would invite him over as a ‘special guest’ and that allowed them to control and deliver key messages with aplomb. Every piece of the plentiful coverage reads like an advert for Australia, which is exactly what you want when you’re the Australian Tourist Board.

Moreover, it was also a great campaign for women’s football. There are plenty of women football ‘supporters’, not enough women football ‘fans’. To understand what I mean here, ask anyone in your office if they support women’s football and the overwhelming majority will say yes. Ask the same people how many games they’ve watched this tournament and those that answer ‘yes’ will become an overwhelming minority.

Ideas that develop, nurture and showcase the fandom of women’s football will help the sport grow towards an exciting new phase. There have been several great campaigns that support the women’s game, we now need to support the supporting of the women’s game. Supporters don’t buy merchandise, fans do. Supporters don’t buy an extra sports broadcast package, fans do. Supporters don’t travel to Australia to watch the Lionesses, fans do. Put simply, fans put more money into the game than supporters do. Support fans, you support the long-term growth of the game.

‘It’s Raining Them’ for Deezer by Talker Tailor Trouble Maker

The second stunt I wanted to shine a light on happened exactly two years ago.

When Talker Tailor Trouble Maker dropped ‘It’s Raining Them’ for Deezer, I sat at Mischief HQ and had that famously irritating feeling all creatives will have had at some point; “Fuck. Wish I’d thought of that.”

If you missed it at the time, they created, re-wrote and launched It’s Raining Them by Mila Jam; a remake of the 80s smash hit and queer anthem, to be inclusive of trans and non-binary people, on behalf of global music streaming service Deezer, donating all streaming revenue to charity, Gendered Intelligence. It was brave, slightly ahead of its time, bold and charming. It got loads of coverage, won a few awards, and was a perfect example of the best-in-class creative work our industry can deliver.

I bring it up this week to provide some balance. There have been some added details this week about their demise, so thought it would be nice to apply some added detail about their successes. To my absolute annoyance, that campaign used to get cited by our clients as the sort of work they wanted to do. TTTM were always one step ahead on diversity and inclusion policies and every staff member I met radiated enthusiasm and love for the game.

On the off-chance any ex-TTTM staffer reads this, that’s your legacy – you made trouble for other agencies.

This week's PR Stunt Watch was written by Greg Double, Creative Director at Mischief PR.

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