There is an important marketing lesson about getting media coverage in this recent news item about the new Ducati superbike.
Below is a copy of the news as reported on Yahoo News. If you Google "Tom Cruise Ducati" you will find the same item almost word-for-word from several other news sources. What does that tell you? That the news release aka press release was used word-for-word. It's not often that your news release gets used exactly as is because the media try to improve on it and add their own slant to your news. In this case the Ducati media relationships people did such a good job of their news releases that the media used it as is.
Read the news below and notice what Ducati did so well - and how you as a marketer can learn from this successful example.
Tom Cruise getting Ducati superbike
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. - Tom Cruise is the first on the list to get Ducati's newest motorcycle — a $72,500 superbike bristling with titanium, magnesium and carbon fiber technology that can scoot up to 200 mph.
Cruise is scheduled to take delivery of the Desmosedici RR at Beverly Hills Ducati this week. Only 1,500 of the red-and-white Moto GP racing replica motorcycles will be made and Cruise gets the first.
Michael Lock, chief of Cupertino-based Ducati North America, said the Desmosedici RR "is the impossible dream — made possible."
"We are delighted to be able to deliver the world's first production unit here in the USA to Tom Cruise, who is a well-known Ducati enthusiast," Lock said in a statement.
The Media-Relations Lesson
Lead with the biggest story and in this case, Tom Cruise is a bigger story than Ducati. Ducati launching a new big is news to Ducati owners and fans and owners and fans of other makes of superbikes. And even fans and owners of other bikes might be interested to know about a $72,000 bike that can go 200 miles per hour. However the biggest audience is people who like or adore Tom Cruise. Many of these people don't even care about motorcycles but they want to read about almost anything that Tom Cruise does.
This is the win-win outcome. The media publishes a story that their readers want and Ducati gets the coverage both inside and outside of their market.
Notice too that the photo that accompanies each of these articles is of Tom Cruise. Not the Ducati, not even Tom Cruise near a motorcycle.
The big mistake would have been to write a news release that starts with "Ducati is pleased to announce..."
And yet that is the way that too many marketers write their news release.
So, tip of the hat to Ducati media relations people on a job very well done.
Here's another thing for you to think about. Do you think that Tom Cruise asked to be first? Of course not - why would he care. And do you think that Tom Cruise paid for this $72,000 bike? Of course not. I wonder how much Ducati paid Cruise over and above the value of the Ducati.
If you are launching a new product and you want publicity how will you tie it to a bigger story? Remember when Microsoft launched Windows 95 they used the Rolling Stones song "Start me Up" as the theme song
PS: I posted the photo of the Ducati here - because I would rather look at that than Tom Cruise.
PPS: If you want to see Tom Cruise photos click hereMore tips on grabbing media exposure click here
Marketing Expert and Author
George Torok in the media
Tom Cruise 1st in line to snag Ducati superbike - Autos- msnbc.com
29 Jan 2008 ... Tom Cruise is the first on the list to get Ducati's newest motorcycle — a $72500 superbike bristling with titanium, magnesium and carbon fiber technology
Tom Cruise Gets a Pricey Ducati - Luxist
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