Media Alert: Sputnik turns 50

October 3, 2007

PRNewser keeps an eye on media alerts, looking for clever events and tie-ins that garner a torrent of publicity. Sometimes the torrent is a trickle, though cute anyway. The wifi company Sputnik launched a page of history & jokes to commemorate the 50th anniversary of its namesake, the Russian satellite who’s name spawned many retro-modern Eames-era space-age (important keywords when selling stuff on Craigslist) products.

The media alert comes complete with icky CEO quote: “We think our company name is iconic, in the way that Caterpillar is, but without the yuck factor of being named after a bug.”

Iconic anniversaries work if they’re your own product. In-house folks note, if you have some time to kill to create a page like this, and spend the $500 bucks on a media alert for a tie-in, it’s marketing and a bit of SEO, not media relations. Manage expectations about the placements. Sputnik likely spent a ton of money on the name, branding, and the URL and I’m sure is compelled to take it out for a spin.

We think Sputnik and one of their partners should actually build a Sputnik look-alike router. Gizmodo, Coolhunting, and Slashdot would eat it up and the MSM would follow. There are some ugly ones out there, excluding Apple’s, of course.


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