More than 8 million people watched Red Bull’s live YouTube feed of Felix Baumgartner becoming the first skydiver to break the speed of sound as he jumped from more than 24 miles above the earth, the Google-owned site has confirmed.
The figure exceeded what is thought to be the previous high in 2009 when 7 million people simultaneously watched the live feed of US President Obama’s inauguration, according to Akamai Technologies.
Baumgartner’s record breaking feat was also broadcast on more than 40 networks across 50 countries.
More than 3 million tweets were sent about the jump yesterday (14 October), including those from people encouraged by Red Bull to send their questions for Baumgartner’s post-jump press conference.
Red Bull plans to follow up the enormous reach of the stunt, news of which has appeared on most UK national newspapers’ front pages today, with a TV documentary that will air later this year.
The drinks brand, which carries the marketing strapline “Red Bull gives you wings”, achieved maximum exposure during Baumgartner’s free fall by featuring its logo across his space suit and helmet.
Red Bull has not made public how much the stunt – which included funding the equipment, training and support staff – cost. The balloon that took Baumgartner on his ascent is reported to have cost $70,000 (£43,600) alone.
Car marque Chrysler also managed to associate itself with the global event by paying for a pre-roll ad on the YouTube livestream.