Short List
Product / ServiceALCOHOL
CategoryA03. Brand or Product Integration into an existing programme or platform
Contributing Company ANOMALY New York, USA


Name Company Position
Ronnie Thomas PHD associate director
Carlos Matriano PHD associate director
Guy Hearn OMG Chief Innovations Officer

The Campaign

Being a global campaign with Alcohol as the product did provide some challenges. Certain markets especially in APAC had strict government regulations surrounding alcohol advertising. The use of such a global icon as Mr Porter (targeting a more sophisticated audience) enabled Johnnie Walker to engage with this audience outside of those regulations as consumers where pulled into the content rather than pushed. Content marketing and the leveraging of another publishers properties, audience and expertise allowed us to build credible associations within the luxury space.


With the end of the Global Financial Crisis, the luxury market was seeing strong growth. A new affluent consumer was quickly emerging, made up of digitally-savvy consumers. However, to this new affluent consumer, scotch was a fixture of the ‘old-world’ and seen as ‘old-luxury’. Blue Label therefore needed to establish itself as the icon of new luxury. The target audience knew about the Johnnie Walker brand but did not understand the craftsmanship and special nature of Blue Label. To change perceptions we needed a channel that would allow us to engage longer than usual. We therefore chose Digital to be the lead medium. The key insight driving our strategy was our realization that this ‘democratization’ of luxury had created a consumer who wanted to Acquire, not just Aspire. They didn’t just want badge status; they now also wanted to acquire the lifestyle promised by the brand. We introduced our audience to the Blue Label lifestyle with the launch of “The Gentlemen’s Wager” - a six-minute film featuring Jude Law wagering for the ownership of a luxury yacht. But that wasn’t enough for our new affluent consumer. They also need to acquire the lifestyle So we gave them a chance to acquire this world through a unique and exclusive partnership with the men’s fashion portal, Mr. Porter. It featured additional KOL Wager films, and most importantly a shoppable clothing and accessory collection from the actual film. We therefore allowed our target to acquire the film’s lifestyle.

We first identified (through qual research) that our audience was inspired by the film and as such drove them after viewing the 6 minute clip, to a Mr Porter page where they can "Shop the Look" and find other associations with the brand. Apart from editorial pushes and social network call-outs by Mr Porter, we also utilized and engaged with various KOLs and influencers to drive PR, as we felt that discovery of the content via credible sources would be more effective than traditional media formats. various sponsored and organic posts

With 45 million views, we gave a new generation a taste of the Blue Label lifestyle. We achieved #1 on the Mashable Viral Video Chart, making us an iconic feature on the pop culture landscape. We secured 46% global digital share of voice for alcohol and 59% for luxury, making us the most talked about brand during the campaign. Crucially there were close to a million engagements on our Mr Porter hub, as young affluents explored how they could acquire the Blue Label lifestyle. The campaign had direct impact on the brand, with sales globally growing by +41%,

Whilst the hero of the campaign was a 6 minute viral video that achieved over 45Million views and was one of the top viral films for 2014, an equally important part of the campaign was the partnership with Mr Porter that featured additional wager videos, content on different drink mixers and a shoppable clothing collection inspired by the look and feel of the film. All this allowed the live the lifestyle and create further positive associations with the Blue Label brand. The partnership which focused on content integration has been described as JWT as a future trend which they have coined as "shoptainment". The commercial possibilities didn't end there with an affiliate deal negotiated with Mr Porter that provided a % of sales from items bought through the website that had been directed from the campaign.