BREAKING BAD’S TRIP TO BELIZE

A negative mention on a hit cable series turned into a positive-press tsunami. We love the AMC show Breaking Bad. And we love our client, the Belize Tourism Board. So you can imagine how shocked we were when one of the characters from the show euphemistically described murder as “a trip to Belize”.

We made the most of it, the best way we know how. Authentically.

Where a lot of people saw a problem…

"Fuck." — The Belize Tourism Bureau #BreakingBad

— Damon Lindelof (@DamonLindelof) August 19, 2013

We Saw An Opportunity

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We reacted the best way we knew how. Authentically.

When Belize was mentioned, in a not-so-flattering-way, we reacted timely and authentically. AMC dug it. The media dug it. And so did a lot of people. Buzz60 did a nice video recap of this story.

We offered the cast a free trip—in the New York Times.

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THE REACTION WAS AWESOME

Then things went nuts with 300 million positive impressions.

The Bottom Line

On the strength of more than 300 million media impressions, plus a social-media deluge, Belize turned a pop-culture moment that would have terrified many marketers into a major platform to show off the country’s good humor and “Just Be” vibe.

Online sentiment around Belize –which had been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons in the weeks leading up to the episode– improved dramatically.

On the strength of more than 300 million media impressions, plus a social-media deluge, Belize turned a pop-culture moment that would have terrified many marketers into a major platform to show off the country’s good humor and “Just Be” vibe. Online sentiment around Belize –which had been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons in the weeks leading up to the episode– improved dramatically, jumping from 1:1 positive-to-negative mentions in the week prior to the episode to 8:1 during the week that followed. The program contributed to an overall rise in Belize tourism that has occurred in the months since.


Team

Agency: Olson

GCD: David Fiedler

PR Account Director: Shannon Lovich

Media Relations: Kirsten Long, Mary Claire Jensen

CD: George Fiddler

Art Director: Lindsay Wright


Awards

Adweek

Realtime Marketing: Comebacks, #4

Ad Fed District "Addy"

Silver Social: Breaking Bad & Belize

Ad Fed's The Show

Gold Social Media Campaign: Breaking Bad

Bronze Social Media Campaign: Polar Vortex

Creativity Magazine

Top 20: #1, Polar Vortex

In2 Sabre

Best in Show: Breaking Bad

Best Marketing Buzz: Breaking Bad

Best Digital Influence: Media: Breaking Bad

Issues Management: Breaking Bad

Quick Wins, Micromarketing: Polar Vortex