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Updated by Rusty Cawley on Jan 20, 2015
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Rusty Cawley Rusty Cawley
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8 great publicity stunts in U.S. history

Torches of Freedom
"Torches of Freedom" was a phrase used to encourage women's smoking by exploiting women's aspirations for a better life during the women's liberation movement in the United States. Cigarettes were described as symbols of emancipation and equality with men. The term was first used by psychoanalyst A. A.
Taco Bell cashes in on Mir
US restaurant chain Taco Bell promises every American a free taco, if the Mir space station falls to earth on its floating target in the Pacific.
Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
The classic "Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade" logo (seen on right) was, with one exception, last used in 2005. For 2006 a special variant of the logo was used. Every year since a new logo has been used for each parade.
Goodyear Blimp
A Goodyear Blimp is any one of a fleet of blimps operated by Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company for advertising purposes and for use as a television camera platform for aerial views of sporting events. Goodyear began producing airship envelopes in 1911 and introduced its own blimp, The Pilgrim, in 1925.
John and Yoko's Bed-Ins for Peace
During the Vietnam War, in 1969, John Lennon and Yoko Ono held two week-long Bed-Ins for Peace in Amsterdam and Montreal, which were their non-violent ways of protesting wars and promoting peace. The idea is derived from a " sit-in", in which a group of protesters remains seated in front of an establishment until they are evicted, arrested, or their demands are met.
The Blair Witch Project's viral marketing campaign

In today's technological world, a message can go viral within minutes thanks to a host of networking sites such as YouTube, Twitter and Facebook. Naturally, viral marketing has become a popular business strategy to spread ideas and information between people in much the same way as a virus, creating the potential for exponential growth as the message rapidly multiplies - creating a huge buzz along the way.

The Big Jump -- Red Bull's Stratos Project
Red Bull Stratos was a space diving project involving Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner. On 14 October 2012, Baumgartner flew approximately 39 kilometres (24 mi) into the stratosphere over New Mexico, United States, in a helium balloon before free falling in a pressure suit and then parachuting to Earth. The total jump, from leaving the capsule to landing on the ground, lasted approximately ten minutes. While the free fall was initially expected to last between five and six minutes, Baumgartner deployed his parachute after 4 minutes and 19 seconds.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Bull_Stratos
The Death of Superman
In 1993, D.C. Comics shocked comic book aficionados all over the world by announcing the release of the comic book called “The Death of Superman”. Comic book forums and blogs went aflame at the prospect of losing Superman, and news media covered the developments quite regularly.

The first issue of “The Death of Superman” was sold out on the first day. Millions of readers purchased the comics following “The Death of Superman”, including titles “Funeral for a Friend” and of course the grand finale: “The Return of Superman”. D.C. never planned on discontinuing the Superman series, they just relied on the fans’ emotional attachment to the character and made millions both in terms of media coverage and sales revenue.

http://www.publiseek.com/publicity-stunts/dc-guerilla-marketing-the-death-of-superman/