Product / ServiceHECATE
CategoryA01. Food / Drink
EntrantCHERRY Tokyo, JAPAN
Idea Creation CHERRY Tokyo, JAPAN
Production BRAVO Tokyo, JAPAN
Production 2 KAIBUTSU Tokyo, JAPAN
Production 3 TM Tokyo, JAPAN
Additional Company ADK Tokyo, JAPAN


Name Company Position
Kensuke Harada CHERRY Creative Director + Campaign Director + Copywriter + Planner
Shotaro Nieda CHERRY PR Director + Planner
Fusanari Masuda CHERRY Art Director+Planner
Yuto Tamura TM INC. Designer
Hiroki Kato ADK Strategic Planner
Hideo Fukuyama ADK Account Producer
Toru Murayama ADK Account Producer
Koji Endo ADK Account Producer
Masakazu Sasaki BRAVO Campaign Producer
Hiroyoshi Uruma K.K.H.U Stage Director
pirates of machobean Freelance Choreographer
Yusuke Kitani kaibutsu Equipment Designer
Yoichi Kanazawa kaibutsu Equipment Designer
Hikaru Shiiki PYRAMID FILM QUADRA Web Producer
Sonoka Yoshida PYRAMID FILM QUADRA Web Assistant Producer
Manabu Ariyoshi Web Designer AID-DCC
Yuta Sumi PYRAMID FILM QUADRA Project Manager
Yuki Igarashi Pagiles Operation Manager
Ryosuke Sato Pagiles Operation Manager
Yumi Kato Pagiles Operation Manager
Toshiyuki Sakuma Freelance Execution Director
Takanori Kubo catchball Inc. PR Promoter
Yoshinori Maruyama Soda! Communications Film Producer
Tsuyoshi Yabuki Soda! Communications Film Production Manager
Erika Michishita HECATE Founder of HECATE

Why is this work relevant for Direct?

Hecate launched in 2018. We needed to find an aggressive growth hack for party goers to recognize the brand quickly. Instead of producing a TV CM, we opted to use direct communication with our target market. We came up with the "Drunk Prank Delivery" concept. This service brought a club atmosphere to anywhere in Japan. Along with their hyper-enthusiastic energy, they brought out that drunken partying feeling, only without the alcohol. The HECATE Party Squad was able to trick partiers into thinking that they were getting drunk on HECATE when in reality HECATE is is non-alcoholic.


Around the world, the trend of young adults keeping their distance from alcohol is growing. In Japan the rate of alcohol consumption among young adults has fallen by half over the past ten years according to a recent government study. But these non-drinkers want a way to party too. We made Hecate for them. Everything from the packaging, flavoring, and coloring was designed to impersonate an alcoholic drink. We replicated these attributes so well, consumers were convinced they were drinking an alcoholic beverage. Leaning into that feature with sensational marketing, we wanted to create an experience that encouraged our consumers to realize they could party without alcohol and be excited to spread the word.

Describe the creative idea (30% of vote)

We invented a new service called “Drunk Prank Delivery” that you can order online to directly experience that rowdy drunken feeling without the alcohol. We hid from our initial consumers that this was a non-alcoholic and had them try the berverage , allowing the power of suggestion to take over. The service delivered HECATE’s brand ambassadors, the Drunk Squad, along with their party paraphernalia (like a toilet paper gun), as they drove all around Japan in a pimped out truck. Drunk Squad created a party atmosphere. The consumer’s psychology did the rest. When we revealed to them that the product was a non-alcoholic beverage they were incredulous at first, then amazed. They had been playfully pranked and now could see that they had just as much fun without the alcohol. Our twist ending inspired the consumers to spread the Hecate brand name by word of mouth through social media.

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

Our main target is the young adult party lover. According to a Japanese government study, alcohol consumption rates have fallen to less than half of what it was in the past 10 years nationally. But partygoers who are looking for non-alcoholic entertainment options are increasing. Many believe that they aren’t able to get into the partying mood without alcoholic drinks. For that reason,we created the HECATE delivery service that concealed the drink’s 0% ABV level. After the experience, we informed them Hecate was non-alcoholic and many were pleasantly surprised. They saw that they could get into a drunken partying mood with our non-alcoholic beverage. We directly engaged our target audience by literally handing them the product. Then we revealed it was non-alcoholic to their surprise. This was our way of making it part of their party routine.

Describe the execution (20% of vote)

Hecate website allows users to get access to have just the drunk feeling delivered to them anytime they want. We delivered a party atmosphere to them whenever and wherever they wanted. After they entered their location, the Drunk Squad (a group of enthusiastic young women led by a charismatic drag queen) would be sent on their way in a custom truck with 10 all-original Hecate devices (including wearable disco mirror-ball, bubble backpack, Hecate gun, and toilet paper gun). Using all these devices, we turned houses, bars, and clubs into the ultimate party venue. Our service delivered a party atmosphere to them whenever and wherever they wanted. This unique service spread without any advertising. Just word of mouth.

List the results (30% of vote)

We concentrated solely on the experience and the website, relying on word of mouth. The results were unexpected and fantastic. The unique weirdness of our service and compelling proposition that one could become drunk without drinking alcohol perked up many ears. The prank itself, that utilized the placebo effect, made it even more buzzworthy. Before “Drunk Prank Delivery”, our brand recognition was 0%. Within three months, it was nearly 50%. We tracked social media and found that there had been over 3.5 million brand impressions. On top of that, 302 new media articles mentioned the Hecate name. The buzz fed off of itself. There was increased demand for our product in clubs and concert venues coming from the venue owners. In our first year we went 300% over our anticipated sales numbers.