Top 10 PR Stunts of 2019

Published on 13 December 2019

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Each year we see huge progression in the marketing industry – the PR campaigns are becoming more and more impressive, through creativity and innovation. This current era, governed by the internet and social media, is ensuring that these PR stunts reach vast audiences in almost less than no time!

2019 has been the best year ever if you’re talking PR stunts, so, here’s a list of our top 10 PR stunts (in no particular order) this annum…


1. Pornhub – Dirtiest Porno Ever

When it comes to ocean pollution, there’s an immensely strong push from the population to bring about change and something we’re strongly passionate about at Sketch Events. It’s a serious issue that our planet faces and the humorous manner in which Pornhub have approached this campaign (without making it seem like a joke or a mockery) was bold and well thought out. This is definitely our number 1 contender for ‘Funniest PR Stunt of 2019”

Pornhub made the ‘dirtiest porno ever’ by filming a scene on one of the world’s most polluted beaches. Pornhub’s vice president, Corey Price said: “We’re dirty here at Pornhub, but that doesn’t mean our beaches need to be. Pollution has grown to become one of the most significant global issues of 2019, and it’s only getting worse. That’s why it’s imperative that we use our platform to raise awareness and inspire change”


2. nhow Hotels – Giant Chameleon

nhow Hotels unveiled a brand-new hotel (the first of its kind in London) this August. In order to make a scene and drum up a buzz, the giant nhow chameleon scaled Brick Lane’s iconic Truman Brewery chimney, making Sketch Events the first to ever attach something to this grade 2 listed landmark! There was even a light show at night that included the chameleon lighting up from the inside, as well as a powerful, coloured beam of light that shot out of the tower!

The installation was accompanied by brightly dressed brand ambassadors, situated on the iconic Brick Lane, handing out origami leaflets that were shaped just like the giant chameleon. On the leaflet was an Instagram competition that people could enter. The best picture of the chameleon would win a stay at any of the nhow hotels across Europe!

Check out our case study for more information…


3. Fiji Water Girl

The Golden Globes; one of Hollywood’s most high-profile events, hosting the best of the best – the hottest stars and the top A-listers. However, it was an unknown face who stole the show, this year, in 2019.

Fiji Water employed a model to photobomb as many of the red-carpet snapshots as she possibly could. She was equipped with a tray of Fiji water, that was present in every picture, and managed to get herself papped next to the likes of Idris Elba, Kaley Cuoco and Jim Carey! – we’d consider that a masterclass in product placement.

The images of the ‘Fiji Water Girl’ went viral on social media almost instantaneously and she became an internet sensation overnight!


4. Greggs Vegan Sausage Roll

Greggs’ had perhaps their best year in ever in 2019. They absolutely smashed it out the park with a number of PR campaigns, and both their sales and store numbers rose significantly.

Our favourite PR stunt of theirs this year was their ‘Apple’ style advert they produced to promote the launch of their brand-new vegan sausage rolls, and boy was it a hit! The vegan sausage rolls ended up being their best-selling product, selling out across all selected stores. It left Greggs no choice but to stock the new product in every single one of their stores.

Check out their advert in the video embedded below. The technological puns and mimicked aesthetic to match Apple’s branding makes for a humorous watch.


5. The World’s First Rideshare Submarine

The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system and an ecosystem that is vital to our planet. Unfortunately, the reefs are dying due to the marine pollution that is plaguing our oceans. In order to show people the beauty of the reef, to encourage them to look after the planet and drive visitors to Queensland, Australia; Uber partnered with tourism Queensland to the world’s first rideshare submarine – The ‘ScUber’


6. Netflix Transforms Little Italy

To promote the release of their brand-new, big-budget blockbuster ‘The Irishman’ – a mafia movie directed by Martin Scorsese, starring Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Al Pacino – Netflix transported New York’s Little Italy in 2019 back to the year of 1975. Phone boxes and shop fronts were decorated to look like they did when the movie was set, and they even had a classic Cadillac offering rides to passers-by!

As well as the transformation, Netflix were even giving away loads of freebies that connected to the film – free chianti (red wine), rice balls from America’s oldest cheese shop and iconic sweet treat, cannoli from a number of café’s in the area


7. Burger King’s #BKMeltdown

Burger King launched their new #BKMeltdown initiative late in September of 2019. The idea behind this PR campaign was to reduce the amount of plastic going into landfill by stopping the production of plastic toys in their kid’s meals and even letting people bring in old toys from any fast food brand to be melted down and recycled.

To spread the word and draw attention to the campaign, they commissioned us (Sketch Events) to build a giant, melting toy that was then installed at The Observation Point in Southbank, London. This PR stunt generated coverage numbering in the millions and was even featured on BBC News!

Check out our case study for more information…


8. Adidas Airdrop Stunt

Technology is ever-evolving, and it’s use in marketing and PR stunts is becoming increasingly more frequent as the years go on.

Adidas made the most of modern-day technology culture this year at the Coachella festival to release their brand-new sneaker collaboration with Donald Glover a.k.a Childish Gambino.

Whilst on stage, Glover used an iPhone to AirDrop a photograph of his unreleased Adidas trainer to random attendees in the crowd. Those in the audience who accepted his AirDrop request were then gifted with their very own pair of the shoes to wear them around the festival as promo before the general release.


9. The Brexit Bunker

Eric Cantona, labelled as Britain’s greatest ever European import, has teamed up with Paddy Power to tackle the UK’s most prominent topic of 2019 – Brexit!

Paddy Power have launched the ‘Brexit Bunker’ – a secluded fortress in the middle of the ocean where one lucky Brit will be able to avoid all Brexit chatter.

Paddy Power put their signature stamp on, one of their funniest campaigns this year, with plenty of line-crossing humour and lots of satire. Watch the advert embedded below to see for yourself.


10. Date Night at The Louvre

The world-famous Louvre art museum partnered with Airbnb earlier this year, in April, to spoil one very lucky couple with what could only be considered the best date night of 2019 (maybe even EVER!).

Daniela Molinari and her partner were accompanied by the Mona Lisa as they chinked glasses and sipped champagne. Shortly after, they enjoyed a gourmet meal in the presence of Venus de Milo, the ancient Greek statue. This was followed by a private concert in Napoleon III’s apartment and, finally, they ended their night by sleeping in the iconic glass pyramid.

This was all to celebrate 30 years of the Louvre’s pyramid and we can’t help but feel tremendously jealous of the winning couple.