cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Frank Comes Back for Jack, Coors Gets Digital and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 28, 2014 06:43 PM

Let's Get Digital: Molson Coors Deploys LCD Beer Cases

In a partnership with Groupe Viva, a digital retail innovation firm, Molson Coors has unveiled new beer refrigerators that have a transparent LCD display that serves up digital advertising based on what consumers are seeking. 

"As specialists in digital innovations, our objective is to combine the latest advances in technology and digital content and make them accessible to retail chains and major brands,” said Pierre Gendron, CEO of Groupe Viva, in a press release.

Looking for a way to differentiate its products, the interactive fridges will be trialed in 40 stores and 10 bars and nightclubs in the Montreal area. The partnership follows another digital stunt by the company, which deployed Molson Canadian-branded refrigerators around the world (and at the Sochi Olympics) that only opened after scanning a Canadian passport.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Bud Brings World Cup Together, Diageo Boosts Youth Employment and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 21, 2014 07:52 PM

Bud Unveils Rise as One World Cup Campaign

World Cup soccer can be pretty divisive. In fact, professional soccer fans are some of the most rowdy in the sports world, with some groups of fans even being banned from attending World Cup games. 

But Budweiser, the official beer sponsor of the Cup in Brazil this summer, wants to instead focus on how soccer brings people together through its Rise As One campaign, which will run from March through July. The unique campaign will attract even more attention because it is in black and white.

"Budweiser has purposely taken the color out of it to just focus on the people and their emotion,” said Jennifer Anton, Budweiser UK marketing manager. "In a sea of color, you will see a black and white campaign which is very unusual. Budweiser will stand out with this."

Along with the campaign, Budweiser will launch a Budlocator app that allows consumers to locate the nearest bars or eateries that serve Bud’s products. A limited-edition gold aluminum bottle featuring the World Cup trophy has also been released to celebrate the upcoming tournament.Continue reading...

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Heineken Off to a Rough 2014 as New Campaign is Banned in the UK

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 17, 2014 04:24 PM

It was a rough 2013 for Heineken, and 2014 hasn't started off much better. 

The company saw its 2013 profit drop 53 percent, with only $1.87 billion in revenue compared to 2012's $3.98 billion. The company was hoping that “gradual improvement of the global economy should help spur growth” this year, according to the Wall Street Journal

But even an improved economy can't help Heineken avoid the loss of a major ad campaign. That's exactly what's happening in the UK, where it's newest ads for Kronenbourg 1664 have been banned by the UK Advertising Standards Authority. The ad watchdogs have a problem with the fact that the brew seems to pass itself off as French in the ads, when in reality it is brewed in the UK, according to Ad Age. While the commercial and print campaign contain text saying so, the ASA still feel it is misleading.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Bacardi Goes Green, Crackdown on Gluten-Free Booze Claims and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 14, 2014 06:34 PM

Bacardi Gets Green

Bacardi Limited may be 152 years old, but it is thinking like a youngster. The world’s largest privately held spirits company has set its sights on obtaining “40 percent of the sugarcane-derived products used to make its rums from certified, sustainable sources by 2017 and 100 percent by 2022—an industry first—as part of a new global sustainability campaign,” according to Sustainable Brands.

“Protecting the natural resources we use to create our brands, at every step along the value chain, is central to our corporate responsibility,” said Ed Shirley, Bacardi's president and CEO, according to the site. “We’ve always set the bar high. Now, we’re taking our solid, sustainable foundation to the next level.”

The sustainability campaign doesn't just extend to its supply chain, but also to its corporate offices. As part of the new campaign being launched across 75 offices, Bacardi employees will be able to track just how environmentally-friendly they are being both at home and in the office.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Jelly Belly Gets Tipsy, China Hurts Remy, Coors Gets Cold and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 24, 2014 08:07 PM

Craft Beer Cracks the Candy Market

Jelly Belly has never been afraid to offer up exotic flavors to its customers. In addition to all the expected sweets, Jelly Belly offers jelly beans that taste like, dirt, vomit, grass and booger. Yum.

So maybe it isn’t so shocking that its latest flavoring to hit the market is… beer. The company has been working for three years to perfect the taste of a decent brewski to add to its collection of other alcohol-themed jelly beans, such as Mai Tai and piña colada. 

"First, we tried to work on matching the hops. Then we worked on the yeast flavor," Ambrose Lee, Jelly Belly's research and development manager, told USA Today. It took years for Budweiser to get it right, too.

Jelly Belly is keen on capitalizing on the world's building beer craze, but that doesn't mean it will get through the gate without a few moms wagging their finger at the adventurous brand.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Johnnie Walker Makes a Pact, Busch's Blue Collar Heroes and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 17, 2014 08:14 PM

Johnnie Walker Gets Responsible

Johnnie Walker loves the idea of enjoying drinks—responsibly, of course. The brand makes the point extra clear with a new 90-second spot that features a Formula 1 race car made out of glasses.

"The film acts as a reminder of the fragility of human life,"  Grant Hunter, Asia-Pacific creative director for Iris Worldwide, told Adweek. "Ultimately it's an alcohol brand stepping up to its responsibilities. And I like to think we've delivered it in a beautiful and considered manner."

It took 1,750 glasses to create the illusion of a full-out racing car that shatters and reforms. The ad pulls double duty by also highlighting the brand's sponsorship of the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Formula 1 racing team.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Absolut (minus the) Vodka, JT Heads to Beam, Diddy Ups his Tequila Game and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 10, 2014 08:20 PM

Absolut Drops the Vodka

General alcohol categories are no longer a good look for Pernod Ricard's Absolut. The vodka brand is in fact dropping the word 'vodka' from all of its marketing, though it will still use the label on its bottles. 

According to Marketing Week, the "refreshed identity" will be rolled out in the coming months in hopes to “simplify, unify and amplify the brand’s messaging platforms," in a way that makes only knowing the "Absolut" name necessary for distinction among other alcohol brands. 

Sure thing, Pernod.Continue reading...

cocktail hour

All the News You Can Drink: Japanese Whiskey Boom, 'Frappicino' No No, American Drinking Trends and more

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 3, 2014 08:27 PM

Japan's Whiskey Boom

Japan isn’t the first country most people think of when contemplating the best whiskey in the world, but the country’s distilleries are in the midst of a boom time and production and exports are scheduled to go up this year, according to Reuters.

The concern, though, is that a similar boom suddenly died in the 1990s, which caused a few smaller distilleries to shut down. The hope is to not see a repeat of those events while producing enough whiskey to meet the currently rising demand.

"At the moment, no one can see this boom busting,” said Marcin Miller, an importer of small-batch Japanese whisky. "The difficulty is that you're making it today for 20 or 50 years' time." 

So drink up, world.Continue reading...

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