Project: Grolsch Seeding
Expertise: Brand Campaign
Future Proofing Brand Capital: Getting a brand positioning right before taking on the world.
After years of ‘one-size-fits-all’ global marketing, iconic Dutch beer brand Grolsch had failed to make any impact locally. A great beer, but always found in the wrong places and on discount, it continued to lose market share and respect. Or as one person put it in our focus group, “Its the beer your dad drinks”. The situation being perfect for a brand reboot, we set about repositioning the brand as part of a longer-term three-year strategic plan.
From the use of two hops when the world used one to the swingtop bottle, Grolsch had been doing things differently since 1615. This staunchly independent spirit needed to resonate through everything we did, starting with our seeding and ambassador program.
Reinventing how seeding programs work, we quickly built brand loyalty by working with ambassadors to ensure a regular supply of Grolsch to their events as opposed to pushing any old brew on them. We also stepped back from the old school tactic of demanding blanket logo coverage. The iconic Golsch Swingtop bottle did all the talking.
The resulting public relations, social and experiential strategy from the three year long program (the longest ever) ensured Grolsch was constantly in the headlines either in the sub-mainstream culture press such as Vice, The Thousands, Broadsheet, ACCLAIM, The Blackmail or with bloggers, facebookers and tweeters (this was before instagram).
Highlights included supporting the Foals after show DJ sets, as well as Swedish duo First Aid Kit, Australian brother-sister duo Alex and Georgie Cleary (Alpha60), Somewhere Store, Utopian Slumps and China Heights to name but a few.
More importantly, Grolsch quickly turned a corner as it became the beer of choice for Australia’s bright young things. It also laid the strategic foundations for our brand campaigns.
Brand strategy, creative strategy, creative direction, art direction, copywriting, graphic design, illustration, activation, film, photography, music, social media, public relations, influencer campaign, event management, project management, production management & execution.
*SABMiller’s name has disappeared after its $104 billion takeover by Anheuser-Busch InBev, eliminating a corporate moniker whose roots date back to the late nineteenth century. As part of the mega-merger, Grolsch has been on-sold to Japanese brewer Asahi.