A web video news clip by BBC technology reporter Dan Simmons in which he broke an "unbreakable" cell phone at the Consumer Electronics Show has warped into the echelon of unexpected PR video "successes" by surpassing one million views on YouTube in three days.
Simmons, while standing next to Bob Plaschke, CEO of the phone’s maker, Sonim Technolgies, dropped the phone in a fish tank to show its water resistance (it passed) and then whacked the device against the side of the tank, cracking the screen to the surprise of both the reporter and the executive.
"At first I was horrified, but then I saw the publicity that we were getting out of it," Virginia Jamieson, the former Bite PR VP who handles PR for Sonim, told O’Dwyer’s.
"We’ve gotten the eyeballs of people that we never would have before and circulation has been global. We’ve been on prime-time news around the world -- the 6 o’clock news in The Netherlands. There is a downside because the phone did break, but there is upside as well," she said.
Sonim uses the tagline "makers of the world's toughest Xtreme Performance rugged phones."
The company's CEO Plaschke laughed at the unexpected result on the video, while Simmons of the BBC seemed apologetic. "Bob handled it well and I think that helped the video," said Jamieson, who heads Warming Trend Global Communications.
She said some negativity of the video may have partially been offset by Sonim customers who defended the company’s products in web comments to the video clip.