Judge and Jury: Pyramid bagged press interest but what about the contents? - Brooke Bond’s publicity for the launch of its new tea bags may have built pyramid awareness but said little about the quality of what is an unattractive-looking product,

I have to declare an interest here - I’m more of a beer man myself, but even so it’s been difficult to avoid the noise generated by the launch of the new pyramid-shaped tea-bags. If you missed one of the ’performance art’ presentations which began with a 50 foot pyramid being towed by barge through Tower Bridge and ’pyramid’ tap dancing at East Croydon station, you could have been deafened by pounds 50,000 worth of fireworks going off in front of the Oxo tower. At first sight then, the usual response of a fertile PR mind faced with a big budget and a compliant client. Environment marketing lives and it’s no surprise to discover that Ben Jones, who created the stunt, has the music business heritage of 50 foot Michael Jacksons. But did we get the right product messages? Are we talking pyramid awareness or quality here?

I have to declare an interest here - I’m more of a beer man

myself, but even so it’s been difficult to avoid the noise

generated by the launch of the new pyramid-shaped tea-bags. If

you missed one of the ’performance art’ presentations which began

with a 50 foot pyramid being towed by barge through Tower Bridge

and ’pyramid’ tap dancing at East Croydon station, you could have

been deafened by pounds 50,000 worth of fireworks going off in

front of the Oxo tower. At first sight then, the usual response

of a fertile PR mind faced with a big budget and a compliant

client. Environment marketing lives and it’s no surprise to

discover that Ben Jones, who created the stunt, has the music

business heritage of 50 foot Michael Jacksons. But did we get the

right product messages? Are we talking pyramid awareness or

quality here?



The Grocer broke the story with tales of the battle for ’share of

mouth’ among Britain’s tea-slurping legions. ’wet sampling’ in

stores and pictures of a schizophrenic-looking chimp holding a

pyramid bag as if it was an exploding banana (mind you, if I had

to wear nappies and a chimp suit for a living I’d probably look a

bit confused too). But then came the Sunday Times with former

model Jilly Johnson who said: ’my builders will like it’ and Ivy

Brake, 88, who added: ’lovely, it’s lovely’. Tuesday’s

Independent carried a photo of a bloke in a suit and a bowler hat

being molested by a pyramid on Waterloo Bridge as worried-looking

commuters scurried by, eyes averted, heads bowed beneath the

looming burden of another grim day (enlivened we hope by the

cheerful rattle of the tea lady’s trolley and an uplifting

cuppa). But among it all there was Steven Jones, Brooke Bond’s

tea blender, stoutly rebutting claims that all tea in bags is

just sweepings, and telling us that the efficacy of the pyramid

bag had been confirmed by none other than the University of

London’s hydraulics department.



So not a bad balance of awareness-building and humorous hype with

a few surprisingly helpful product messages thrown in. I don’t

think they look that attractive in the box - compared to Tetley’s

plump roundels they have a shrivelled, used prophylactic vibe to

them. And all that dust in the bottom made me desperate for a

proper drink. Time for a pint of Pride.



Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.