Monday, December 13, 2010

Making the Best of a Bad Situation

By Matt Saler

Bernie Eccelstone is a man who knows how to make the most out of a tough situation. Eccelstone, the head of Formula One Racing, was mugged right outside of his London office in October. He was badly beaten and had all of his possessions stolen from him, including his Hublot watch, which is valued at over $300,000.

The 80-year old businessman decided not to be seen as a victim, but rather show the world that he is a brilliant marketer who knows how to rise above and make the most of a bad situation.

The watchmaker Hublot is a major sponsor of the F1 series.

The following day, instead of remaining out of the public spotlight, Ecclestone reached out to the luxury watchmaker and asked them to use his post-robbery headshot – showing him as a beaten man with a large blackened-eye – in their next featured print advertisement. Sure enough, Hublot used the disturbing photo, accompanied by the phrase, “See what people will do for a Hublot.”

Not only did the premier sponsor of Formula One Racing get their message across in the ad, but they got a ton of positive publicity all over the world.

Bravo, Mr. Eccelstone. Get well soon.

Matt Saler is a Senior Account Executive at Maroon PR. Contact him at

1 comment:

  1. I heard about this through the grapevine and thought- what an awful way to make money! I hadn't realised how different the story was though to what I had heard.

    I thought that after a random business man was beaten for his watch, Hublot had used the story of the assaulted man from the news as the foundation for a big campaign with different posters portraying different assaults like the one above. Seriously it's like playing chinese whispers! I actually thought to myself what a horrible way to make money out of someone's unfortunate event.

    Now looking at your blog entry I agree that it was right for Hublot to use this in their marketing strategy as its making a positive out of a negative and showing that Ecclestone is ahead of the game and top at what he does.

    Excellent idea, but shows how if the story is not told right, it could impact their reputation...not that the should care about what i think because i obvs cant afford the watches