Consider some really, really wacky uses of certain products, which may not indicate immediate new blue oceans, but sure can have instant PR value, more powerful than any advertisement campaign, and may jolt a company in previously unimagined directions:
In 1994, 73-year old Richard Farnsworth drove his ’66 John Deere lawnmower 250 miles from Iowa to Mt. Zion, Wisconsin, to see his ailing brother. He made this choice since his eyesight was too poor to have a license and he was too proud to hitchhike. Going along at 5 miles per hour, he met numerous interesting people along the way. His journey was a national sensation, and the subject of a major 1999 movie by David Lynch entitled ‘Straight Story.’ Think about what sort of publicity mileage John Deere could harvest of this incident!
Even more extreme is the story of Larry Walters, a truck driver who gained instant celebrity status in 1982, when he rigged 45 weather balloons to his lawn chair, lifted off, and quickly ascended to a height of 16,000 feet. After a while he got cold, shot some of the balloons with a BB gun in order to descend, and crashed into power lines on the way down. Who would have thought of a lawn chair as a cockpit before?
[Image via Wikimedia.]