Coke Zero James Bond stunt

Continuing it’s partnership with the James Bond film series, Coke Zero has created a fantastic piece of marketing to promote it’s product and the new James Bond film, Skyfall. Since airing late last week, the Coke Zero James Bond stunt has gone viral massively and has certainly got people talking.

Having studied ‘Advertising’ at University and now beginning my career in Marketing, it’s not often I see a marketing stunt which jumps out at me, interests me and doesn’t irritate or annoy me. The new Coke Zero James Bond stunt does everything exactly right… well almost exactly right in my opinion (but more on that later).

About the Coke Zero James Bond stunt

Filmed at a typical, bustling train station, the stunt allows “unsuspecting” travellers and commuters the chance to “unleash their inner James Bond” for 70 seconds.

The stunt see’s “members of the public” (I use this term loosely), approach a Coke Zero machine to buy a can, where they are then offered the chance to win tickets to a screening of Skyfall. They are given 70 seconds to race across the station to another platform and collect their tickets from another machine. Except Coke also chucked in a number of obstacles to distract the James Bond wannabe’s such as a distant friend looking to catch up, blocked escalators and dropped fruit. The outcome is very entertaining, engaging and amusing. However, despite this, I think this is where Coke got it slightly wrong.

Staged or realistic?

If the stunt really was real and the people rushing to grab their tickets are in fact normal, unsuspecting members of the public, then there are some areas Coke got spot on. The first being the violinist placed next to the Coke machine, playing the James Bond theme. A fantastic type of ambient advertising, which I’d imagine would actually be really effective. It sets the scene, gets people looking and talking and keeps the theme tune in your head. You move away from the machine, hop on your train and still find yourself humming that subliminal James Bond theme. Great stuff!

However, I half want to believe that the people aren’t actors and are in fact desperate James Bond fans, as they come up against obstacle upon obstacle. But I find this to be the downfall. Would a real member of the public really soar over a trailer of tipped oranges (and in such a dramatic way) and would they then, (whilst on their own – no friends with them) start to sing them James Bond theme out loud, by themselves? I also want to make the point of all these other people who suddenly appear to join in singing the theme tune… would that really happen in real life?

Overall thoughts

I would love for this to not be staged. Real people on their way to work, who end up finding themselves caught up in the action packed life of James Bond, but my head tells me otherwise. I almost get the impression Coke (or their ad agency) came up with this idea and fell in love with it right from the start. They came up with the obstacles idea, then realised perhaps people wouldn’t react the way they wanted them to – jumping dramatically over tipped suitcases and oranges, people falling over (and ignoring them), so decided to employ actors and stage it all, rather than have it as a real stunt.

Either way, I love the Coke Zero James Bond stunt. It’s lighthearted, fun to watch, amusing and highly entertaining. But I wonder if it’s wrong for them to describe it as a stunt, if it actually turns out it was all staged? Why not just keep it to what it is – an advert.

What are your thoughts? Do you think it’s staged or a real life stunt? Would you have completed the obstacles, in the same way, if you were in their position? Leave a comment below. Thanks everyone.