The Car Fire That Sparked Millions of Impressions for Stanley

Lestraundra Alfred
Lestraundra Alfred

Published:

A car fire ignited a viral marketing moment for the Stanley brand.

On November 15, TikTok user @danimarielettering posted a video showing the aftermath of her car catching on fire. Though the car was totaled, her Stanley Quencher tumbler was intact and still had ice in it.

@danimarielettering Thirsty after you catch on fire? @Stanley 1913 is like no problem i gotchu #fyp #carfire #accident #stanleycup ♬ original sound - Danielle

The video quickly went viral and has gone on to rack up more than 84 million views.

Two days later, Stanley President Terence Reilly stitched Danielle’s original video offering to send her some new tumblers and to replace her car on behalf of the brand. This response has earned over 32 million views, quickly becoming the feel-good story of the season.

The comments to Reilly’s response are filled with praise for the brand, with TikTok users saying:

“This is awesome, definitely buying a Stanley now!”

“They responded, that’s freaking awesome. I’m gonna have to buy a Stanley now.”

“Do I need a Stanley, no. Am I going to buy one on principle now, yes.”

While the circumstances of this marketing moment are unusual, the Stanley brand is no stranger to TikTok virality.

Becoming a viral water bottle brand

Over the years there have been various trendy water bottle brands including S’well, Hydroflask, Yeti, and now Stanley.

The Stanley brand has been around for over 100 years and was best known for goods that could stand up to outdoor activities. However, the brand’s target demographic began to shift after the introduction of the Quencher tumbler in 2017.

That same year, bloggers behind The Buy Guide began sharing links to the Quencher introducing the cups to a new audience that wasn’t familiar with Stanley’s outdoorsy roots. However, in 2019 Stanley stopped listing Quenchers on its website to prioritize other products.

The Buy Guide founders felt there was a greater opportunity to market the tumblers to women, and worked with Stanley on a wholesale arrangement to begin selling the cups on their own site.

According to The New York Times, they quickly sold out of their initial run of 5,000 tumblers in 2019. The success of this initial run led the Stanley brand to reintroduce the Quenchers on the brand’s official site in 2020, offering more colors and an intentional influencer marketing strategy to attract more female customers.

These tactics worked. By 2022 Stanley tumblers continued to gain momentum on social media as the viral item to have and frequently sold out. Last year, sales for Stanley tumblers increased by 275%.

What began as an unfortunate accident, resulted in well over 100 million impressions and positive PR for the already social-savvy brand.

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