In a bizarre turn of events, CEO Jared Youngman took off his shirt, strapped on a pair of gravity boots and hung from his ankles in the middle of a new product launch last night. Even more surprisingly, his audience remained quiet and attentive for the three-minute ‘meditation’ interlude, after which the tech billionaire calmly dismounted and continued his presentation.
While it might be written off as a PR stunt to ensure media coverage, we’re accustomed to flamboyant tech execs attempting live demos designed to wow their audience, or calling robots onto the stage to interact with them. Who can forget Elon Musk’s risky demonstration of the CyberTruck’s bulletproof windows, which cracked when they hurled a steel ball at them? That certainly went viral, and didn’t seem to deter fans from placing advance orders for the vehicle!
But when you’re selling a new AI powered network optimization service, it’s more difficult to get the product features to pop. Youngman claimed it was a demonstration of how seriously they thought about their system architecture, and were continuously putting mental energy into improving and refining the performance of the service. Judging by the cheers and applause he received, the audience bought into his energetic display of commitment to his company’s purpose.
Those of us who are lesser geeks might be forgiven for being unimpressed with the product, but have to pay Youngman grudging respect for his courage. Would you attempt something like that on stage? There must be easier ways to attract attention and make a point. You can always shoot yourself into space!
Whatever the future success or failure of this ‘invisible’ product, and others like it, as a marketing hack was heard to exclaim on leaving the conference: “They won’t forget this one in a hurry!”