Most consumers know Kevlar as the product that stops a bullet. But the product, which is nearing its 50-year anniversary, is used in many other places, including cell phones, protective helmets and astronaut gear.
DuPont Protection Technologies is launching a campaign to showcase the many ways Kevlar, which turns 50 in September 2015, is used in both ordinary and extraordinary ways.
The new effort, with the tagline, “Dare Bigger,” kicks off this weekend with a sponsorship of the X Games on ESPN. The brand is already being featured on the Games’ official website as a sponsor of past highlights and will be used to introduce highlights and recaps throughout the event, says William Weber, vice president for Kevlar at DuPont.
“Kevlar has been used as a component of high-performance sporting equipment for decades,” Weber tells Marketing Daily. “This is a beginning of a repositioning for us.”
The effort will also expand into television with a documentary-style commercial that takes the view from space to the Earth’s surface to below, showing how Kevlar (and the technology behind it) can challenge boundaries.
The three-minute piece, titled “Kevlar, Top to Bottom,” begins with an inspirational quote from Kevlar inventor Stephanie Kwolek, before cutting to images of a space station and astronaut Scott Parazynsky, describing space as “the most foreboding and hostile environment.”
"Without the presence of Kevlar,” he says. “I think it would be terrifying.” The spot goes on to describe Kevlar as a component of airplane bodies, skis and car tires, before showcasing its place in first-responders’ equipment. Kevlar is then shown off as a component in Motorola phones and in mining equipment below the Earth.
“The world is its oyster,” says Bruce Burkholder, of DuPont’s research and development department, at the video’s conclusion. “There’s many applications that can benefit from Kevlar. It’s limitless depending on what the imagination is of the people who have the needs.”
The commercial will run during the Horizons series on BBC World News. DuPont is also working with partner companies and new licensees to get them to use the “Dare Bigger” platform in their materials as well, Weber says.
“It represents inspiration for anyone that relies on the safety and durability of Kevlar,” Weber says. “It enables anyone with an imagination and a job to do, to get it done.”