In my previous blog post: Red Bull Gives You Wings I provided a brief introduction to Red Bull and explained how an energy tonic sold at a family owned Pharmacy in Thailand became synonymous with adrenaline pumping action sports. Somewhere along the journey of building the Red Bull brand, it was realized that an energy drink company could only go so far. From that point, Red Bull pivoted to become a content creation master with strategic partnerships in the sports and entertainment industries. Red Bull learned how to tell a great story and they leaned heavily on their ability to create awesome content that people want to watch.
As I was researching topics for my third and final e-portfolio post for the semester, I discovered a topic that covers both the digital marketing side and the data analytics side: Red Bull’s F1 Racing Team.
Red Bull decided to enter the world of Formula One Racing in the early 2000s and has been a staple in the sport since. Formula One racing is extremely popular across Europe and Asia; the sport is beginning to see an increase in viewership in North America as well.
The partnership between Red Bull and Formula One racing is the perfect example of brand activation. I discovered the following video that Red Bull created to tell the perfect story: The Life of a Bolt
During this short film, we follow the life cycle of a single bolt. The audience follows every intricate engineering process starting with a sketch from an engineer and ending with the bolt being placed inside one of the $15-million-dollar Formula 1 racing cars. This is just one example of excellent storytelling; who knew how interesting the manufacturing process of a bolt could be?
As I continued to research Red Bull F1 racing, I discovered something else – They are not only the perfect storytellers, but they also advocate for big data analytics.
Red Bull F1 Racing has been utilizing Citrix for all of their technology needs. Engineers at Red Bull Racing work tirelessly to optimize their vehicles to shave fractions of a second from lap times. For this to happen, Formula One racing cars undergo over 30,000 technical tweaks a season. This entails analyzing every single part that makes up the car in real time and slightly tweaking things to make slight improvements. The only way this is possible is to install sensors throughout the vehicle that provide important real time data analytics. It is reported that the Red Bull Racing Team exports over 300GB of data after every race. With the help of systems designed by Citrix, they can dive into the data and identify areas of improvement. I did not fully appreciate the scope of exporting 300GB of data after every race, until I realized that Red Bull Racing must travel with and build a data center on the sideline of every race track they race on. They also have to send that data all the way to their racing HQ in the UK to be analyzed. During the duration of the season, the racing team may have to go to areas such as Australia or remote locations in China, where low internet latency could become a major problem. Without the support and expertise of Citrix, there is no way the team could accomplish what they need to from any place on earth.