BERLIN, GERMANY: Unwitting celebrities fall foul of autograph stunt in Bic campaign to build awareness of the brand in Germany; the Bic prank on YouTube led to copycat pranks being posted on the medium.
Despite the Bic Cristal being best selling ballpoint pen in the world (100 billion manufactured as of 2004) the brand still needed to build more consumer awareness in Germany. The German market has a number of large home-grown brands such as Schwan-Stabilo and Schneider, so Bic needed to reclaim its space.
Bic noticed that celebrities give autographs without watching what they are actually signing. It was this insight that inspired a big buzz at Bic. The big idea that developed was this: celebrities give autographs with Bic pens and they sign stuff that they would normally never sign. Bic put the prank videos on YouTube and soon other people started to upload their own Bic Pranks.
Tom Cruise signed a document stating that he has to order boosters seats when he visits restaurants, and Dame Helen Mirren put her name on a piece of paper that declared she was the real Queen of Great Britain. These and other pranks can be viewed at the official Bic Prank YouTube channel www.youtube.com/bicprank.
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