19 marketing world records and ‘firsts’ you probably didn’t know about

Marketing world records
Ellen DeGeneres' tweet from the Oscars was retweeted over 1 million times in 1 hour

The Guinness Book of World Records is a timeless classic. Many of us have either flicked through one, heard countless people quote it, or even received one as a birthday gift from Nana. But did you know that this impressive encyclopedia of records is also filled with weird and wonderful marketing world records?

Since we have written about a few marketing world records already, like Felix Baumgartner’s incredible skydive from the edge of space, and Absolut’s marketing campaign that spanned over 25 years, we figured: ‘Let’s see if there is more where that came from!’

We paid the Guinness World Records website a visit, registered an account for their application search and started trolling through hundreds and hundreds of impressive/funny/bizarre records to find as many marketing world records as possible.

At first, we found out that the world’s biggest taco measured 10.95 meters and weighed 750kg and that the largest gathering of people dressed as leprechauns was achieved in a small Irish town back in 2012 on St Patrick’s Day? 1,263 humans in leprechaun costumes. Priceless.

Then we found the good stuff.

We give you 19 marketing world records and ‘firsts’ you didn’t know about:

  1. The largest online marketing seminar

    …was held by Hubspot in August 2011. The Hubspot hosted webinar had no less than 10,899 participants and the topic was on how to use Facebook and Twitter effectively to create brand reach.

  2. The largest single marketing lesson ever recorded

    …was hosted by Sir John Hegarty and TorieScoota at The Festival of Marketing in London, UK in November 2015. The class was attended by 617 participants.

  3. The first online banner ad

    …was published in October 1994 when AT&T along with 13 other major brands were featured as 468×60 banners on HotWired.com. The copy on the AT&T banner read: ‘Have you ever clicked your mouse right here? You will.’

  4. The largest simultaneous TV commercial premiere

    …happened in 1999 when the Ford Motor Company aired a 2-minute commercial across 140 TV networks in 190 countries. The commercial featured Charlotte Church and all of Ford’s car brands.

  5. The smallest ever advertisement recorded

    …measured 65.15 microns by 59.34 microns and was created by Gilette / Procter and Gamble. With the help of nanotechnology, the company managed to engrave the message ‘Our best work is viewed up close. G.’ on a piece of human beard hair.

  6. The longest standing TV advertising contract

    …was signed in 1971 and is still running. The contract is between advertising agency FCB London and the Daily Mail newspaper. The agency has created over 380 TV commercials (in 800 different versions) for the Daily Mail.

  7. The first brand to have its own emoji

    …was Coca-Cola. The company partnered up with Twitter in 2015 and created a hashtag, #ShareaCoke, which generated an emoji of two Coke bottles clinking together.

  8. The first emoji to be blocked on Instagram

    …was the eggplant/aubergine emoji, which was blocked by Instagram in 2015, as users were using it as a metaphor for male ‘parts’.

  9. The most expensive TV commercial slots on record

    …were the 30-second commercials at the 2013 Super Bowl game in the US. The slots sold for $3.8M USD. And speaking of TV commercials…

  10. The first-ever TV commercial on public TV

    …was aired on an NBC-owned station in New York in 1941.

  11. The first-ever full-page ad in a national newspaper

    …was published in The Times in 1829.

  12. The record for most expensive domain name ever sold

    …was registered in 2009 when internet marketing company QuinStreet acquired com for $16 million USD. The same company acquired online insurance agency insurance.com for $35.6 million USD, which included the website but not the actual agency itself, which hints that securing the domain name was the main reason for the acquisition.

  13. The Facebook page that holds the record for most likes

    …is MTV USA’s Facebook page with a staggering 49,177,020 likes as of May 2017. Speaking of likes and music; the most ‘liked’ female person on Facebook is pop star Shakira with over 104 million likes on her Facebook page.

  14. The Youtube channel with the most views

    …is GMM Grammy Official from Thailand. At the time of Guinness’ review, the content in the channel had been viewed an astronomical 9,699,943,749 times. We don’t even know how much that is. Bazillions?

  15. The most widespread social media message in 24 hours

    …was a tweet by TV personality Ellen GeGeneres in March 2014. Ellen tweeted ‘If only Bradley’s arm was longer. Best photo ever. #oscars’ and the tweet was retweeted over 1 million times in an hour. And speaking of tweets…

  16. The first ever tweet

    …was (of course) sent by founder Jack Dorsey himself at 9.50pm on 21 March 2006. The tweet read: ‘just setting upp my twttr.

  17. The fastest selling top-level domain on the internet

    …is the .me domain. After it was made available for registration in 2008, over 320,000 .me domains were registered in 18 months.

  18. The oldest recorded spam email message

    …was sent by Gary Thuerk (USA) in May 1978 by. Gary was working for a computer equipment company and the message was sent to 397 email accounts on the ARPA network, controlled by the US Defense Department, inviting them to a product demonstration of a computer. The original spam message exists to this day.

  19. The largest advertisement on a building

    …covered a whopping 50 floors and an area of 19,125.48 square meters. The massive literal skyscraper outdoor ad for the Financial Times newspaper was on display on the side of the International Finance Centre in Hong Kong in 2003.

If you feel up for a challenge, you can apply to challenge these world records directly through the Guinness World Records search engine.

Which one would you like to beat?

You’ve just read an article by Peter Helin. Now it’s your turn! Leave your comments below.

Peter Helin is the co-founder of Digital Mic Drop as well as a multi-disciplinary marketer. Peter juggles most of the content that you’ll find here on Digital Mic Drop and he is also helping Digital Mic Drop’s enterprise clients to success through consultation on all things digital marketing, copywriting, content creation and SEO projects. Things like that.

If you would like to get in touch, simply shoot him an email on peter@digitalmicdrop.com.

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