When Over the Top is a Good Thing

Sometimes to do it right, you have to do it big. Posted on Thursday, October 9 in Breaking Through the Clutter.

Louisville likes to do things on a big scale and we’re proud of emphasizing that:

  • Second largest collection of iron façade architecture outside of SoHo, per Dr. Tom Owen’s downtown walking tour.
  • Among only a handful of American cities that are home to every major performing art: professional ballet, opera, orchestra, regional theatre, children’s theatre, Broadway Series and dinner theatre, according to the Louisville CVB. (Plus dozens of museums, attractions and smaller arts organizations.)
  • The nation’s largest annual fireworks event, per Thunder Over Louisville. (And some claim the WORLD’s largest annual combined fireworks event and air show, though no official stat on this).

Additionally, a lot of people in Louisville like to lay claim to the most independent restaurants per capita. (No official stat found on this either - if you find one, let us know!)

Why would Halloween be any different?
The Louisville area is home to the Wavery Hills Haunted House, Haunted Hotel, Danger Run, Nightmare Forest, Baxter Avenue Morgue and Parade, and many, many other events that are a traditional part of the Halloween event period.

Now we also have Louisville’s Jack O’Lantern Spectacular at Iroquois Park. The event boasts 5,000 carved pumpkins along a quarter mile trail. And it is spectacular.
Image by Louisville's Jack O'Lantern Spectacular

Watch a Video on Courier-Journal.com

New Albany is not to be outdone. Harvest Homecoming is now home to a Pumpkin Chunkin contest, held at Purdue University College of Technology in New Albany.

For the contest, five teams of adults and one team of students from Floyd Central High School designed massive catapults to chunk pumpkins 100 yards towards a ‘Great Pumpkin’ target. Engineers have big imaginations.
Image by David R. Lutman/Special to The Courier-Journal

Watch a Video on Courier-Journal.com

All of this got me thinking.

In order to break through the clutter of marketing messages and overall content that consumers absorb in a given day, sometimes going over the top can be a good choice.

Even if it’s not the largest collection of carved pumpkins in the world, 5,000 is enough to grab your attention.

And catapults hurtling pumpkins? Enough said.

So, what can you do with your everyday marketing messages to help break through the clutter and engage audiences with your brand? Is disruptive marketing the right approach?

As in most cases, the answer is it depends.

However it does make sense to:

  1. Step out of the day-to-day.
  2. Think big.
  3. Look at ways that you can test larger than life messages.

How can you get to the level of 5,000 carved pumpkins? What is your Spectacular?

Let’s Talk Strategy

Think about it and contact us when you’re ready to implement an integrated marketing strategy to promote Louisville’s next biggest [insert your idea here].


Courier-Journal Media Brand Manager Cathy ColliverCathy Colliver is a Brand Manager at Courier-Journal Media. Find her on LinkedIn, Twitter and
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