The Galway Racing Festival 2017 has wrapped up. With it came an excellent opportunity for brands to get creative with their marketing. We take a look at five of the most imaginative, clever and edgy advertising campaigns at horse racing events from recent years.
1.Paddy Power – World Leaders On Horseback
For the launch of their new novelty political bets as well as the Cheltenham Festival, Paddy Power hired Trump and Putin lookalikes and had them ride horseback around London. The stunt was a nod to the now infamous picture of Russian president Vladimir Putin riding his horse topless, that has since turned into an internet meme. As with most of their stunts, this both turned heads on the street and grabbed attention online. Paddy Power earned plenty of online coverage in the form of likes, shares and comments.
2. Conor McGregor & Pegasus – The Thirteenth Jockey
The Pegasus World Cup Invitational used sheer star power to promote their 2017 horse racing events. They recruited MMA master Conor McGregor and former Saturday Night Live star Jon Lovitz to star in a series of wacky videos in which McGregor tries his chances as a professional jockey. While the ad was met with mixed reviews, McGregors profile meant that it was seen by millions.
3. Dove – Royal Ascot Ladies Day
In 2014, Unilever brand Dove tapped into the Ladies’ Day tradition at Royal Ascot. During Ladies’ Day, all eyes are on the high street fashion and what trends will emerge. To enhance the experience for attendees, Dove’s professional photographer snapped guests on arrival, with the images displaying on a huge panoramic screen at the venue and shared online. Even more innovative, Dove used the images to track fashion trends. As well as the photos, passersby could also see which clothes and colours were dominating the days trends.
4.Burger King at Belmont Stakes
Horse racing events are known for attracting VIPs like celebrities, business tycoons, and even royalty. In 2015, The Belmont Stakes was no exception, as The King himself was in attendance. That is, The Burger King mascot known as The King.
The stunt racked up the fantastic exposure, helped along by the fast food chain paying famous trainer Bob Baffert to welcome The King into his private box. Burger King paid Baffert $200,000 for the endorsement, with a portion of that going towards the Injured Jockeys Fund charity.
It’s not the first time Burger King showed up at a major sporting event. The same year, The King also attended the long awaited fight between Floyd Mayweather Vs Manny Pacquiao, and was seen shadowing Mayweather in pre-fight interviews.
5. Coral #CheltenHAM Micropig Racing
In 2015, Coral brought some lighthearted humour to Cheltenham with micro-pig racing! The bookmaker wanted to cut through the often serious advertising at Cheltenham with a simple video that melted hearts across the web. They recreated the Cheltenham racecourse with cute micropigs as the competitors.