A couple of weeks ago, the Bournemouth Air Festival - an event lasting four days with air displays, food and drink stands, entertainment hubs and loads more - took place. It’s a great event, drawing more than a million people to our awesome town over the four days. As it’s a local event for us, we thought we’d get involved. But how?
Well, I’ve always wanted to do something ‘stunt’ style and thought a giant one-tonne hailstone full of Jimmy’s Iced coffee crashing on to the beach would be pretty fun and engaging. So we did it. We turned up at 5.30am with a dude called Mark from In Ice Designs, who had eight blocks of ice in the back of his van. Saying we were delivering ice to a restaurant got us through the gate and on to the promenade. While it was still dark we grabbed shovels, dug a small pit and filled it with a pallet. We then built the one metre-cubed hailstone by simply layering the blocks ‘Jenga style’ and allowing the cubes to fuse together.
The blocks were as clear as glass and you could see the suspended cartons perfectly. Once in position, we removed the pallet to allow the hailstone to slump into the sand, making it look like it fell from the sky. And that’s what we told the council when they asked what on earth was happening. That joke died immediately and we were asked why we didn’t ask for permission. We explained that we wanted to do something totally ‘off the cuff’ for everyone and supported our statement with a digital copy of our public liability insurance. Phew…
The rest of the day was spent by people of all ages touching, prodding, poking and licking the hailstone with some lucky ones managing to grab an iced coffee as it melted. We then offered a real iced coffee in return for their frozen one - a great reward for a great deal of patience.
Overall, the activation was very well received and our aim of driving brand awareness was achieved. Many people took photos, asked questions and left knowing that if they ever wanted more, they could pop out to Waitrose, Tesco, BP and more. I’m thoroughly looking forward to doing an entire hailstorm one day with tonnes and tonnes of ice cubes. Watch this space!