The Future of Marketing Is Earned

As consumer behavior shifts and ad budgets shrink, earned media is becoming more important

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In May 1998, a tank waving a Union Jack rolled through the streets of New York toward Times Square. Once there, the armored vehicle smashed through a wall of stacked cola cans. The intended message: America’s soft drink giants, Coke and Pepsi, were under attack.

Onboard was flamboyant British entrepreneur Richard Branson, who was promoting his latest product: Virgin Cola.

“We thought it was a humorous way to get some attention,” Court Crandall, a creative partner at Virgin Cola’s ad agency Ground Zero, told Adweek at the time.

Crandall was correct.



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