Cheers! For every holiday, there seems to be a push for marketers to create, innovate and produce something new and groundbreaking. It doesn’t always work out great because there will always be a lazy way to market a holiday. For St. Paddy’s Day, it’s easy to go green. Throw around a few shamrocks and call it a day. Very easy to do but let’s face it, not groundbreaking or even more than that it garners you little to no attention from your audience. Let’s take a look at the big hitters of St. Patrick’s Day; Guinness and Jameson, and what they have done over the years to push what it means to market for their big holiday.
A Look Back
2012 Guinness took a strong look at some of the troubles people face when trying to organize a night with friends. Presented as a sporting event, “Round up your mates for a Guinness” leads a group of friends through an array of obstacles that anyone can relate to; an aimless group, distractions of girls or (more specific to me) food, even the group splitting up unintentionally. The brand keeps the product almost completely out of the spot but by making it funny and unexpected they have garnered almost 5 million YouTube views.
A few of you may remember the ads that Jameson put together that consisted of a string of videos that celebrated the larger than life character and whiskey maker, John Jameson. Through the videos, you see a man that would conquer enormous odds for the love of his hand-crafted whiskey. Telling a fantastic story incited emotion in the viewers all the while instilling that their product was so valuable the owner would go to any length to be sure it was not compromised. And if you can’t remember the Prussian incursion of 1807, this may help with that too.
The point is, they didn’t have to throw their product in your face. It also wasn’t just a brand logo with a green background and “Happy St. Patty’s Day!” There was thought put into how to get people interested and sharing the brands content. It was creative and served the user.
Those ads came out years ago but what’s working hasn’t seemed to change for these two heavy hitting Irish brands. Jameson Whiskey’s latest Facebook push has been #BeOriginal, making the ad about having your own traditions and celebrating Saint Paddy’s Day your way.
Guinness has a more light-hearted campaign running right now trying to drum up support for a #stoutmoji, an emoji of a pint (or two) of stout as an alternative to the beer stein emoji. A novel idea (if you ask me) to let your brand be fully represented over the emoji options of the two-thirds of Americans that own a smartphone. In 2014, the total US population was just shy of 319 million people. That is a lot of emoji use. Pushing the campaign over Facebook and Instagram, with 6K+ engagements, it seems to be moving in the right direction. This is putting the Guinness beer image in the eyes of their fans at a crucial time when most people, even less than faithful consumers will go out and enjoy a draught of stout for the sake of Saint Patrick’s Day. Thrillist is leading the charge with this (sponsored) memorandum posted to encourage taking action –
The Irish holiday is upon us, with the promise of corned beef and good times with friends, some old and some new. Take this time to give a like and a share to some of the marketing that isn’t just about dyeing ads green or adding a four-leafed clover. Look around; see what is new and who is taking a different approach to such an easily overlooked holiday like Saint Patrick’s Day. And if you are looking to try advertising that isn’t the same old, same old; give us a call and we can craft up content that is far from ordinary.