Absolut launched a film that was very SFX heavy and lofty and meant to appeal to the millennial demographic, but for all its visual wow factor, was very surface level complete with a rambling voice over. And also, humans had nothing to do with the big bang. Logistics aside, the only great thing about it was the tagline. As I said when I posted the ad "Create a better tomorrow, tonight" is a great tagline and one could do a lot with it. Maybe they will."
"Create a better tomorrow, tonight," separates itself from the beer at the bro-down, the billion dollar celebrity in jacket and shirt but always withotu tie, brooding over is craft vodka, or the good times unpretentious wine. "Create a better tomorrow tonight," suggests that if the olden days poems and plays were written with inspiration from wine, and paintings made with inspiration from absinthe, Absolut stakes its claim as the beverage that inspires you to make a better world. In this case we follow seven street artists in seven different cities as they created murals on one night, and then later, lead some community workshops on how to create murals, too. These were the artists and their cities:
Catete, Rio de Janeiro; Brazil - Panmela Castro
Downtown Eastside, Vancouver; Canada - Emily Gray
Chengdu, China - Fansack
Kreuzberg, Berlin; Germany – Ibo Omari / Poet 73 / Gris
Mumbai; India - AVANTIKA
Toxteth, Liverpool; UK - BETA ROK 75
Bushwick, New York; US – Fumero
That's right, "creating a better tomorrow, tonight" comes in the form of a template ad from seven years ago. Take (insert number) graffiti artists from (insert number) of countries around the world and have them do something on one night, so we can appeal to a global audience and local audience (i.e. glocal) and show the world their creativity. Kind of like what Apple did to tout their iPhone 7 camera's low-light capability last year. Or if you're adidas' case, style. But whatever, it's still the same template. For Absolut we get to follow graffiti artists in Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, the UK and the USA, but it could have easily been Tokyo, South Africa, Italy, Argentina and Australia, provided Absolut has market share to increase in those countries. There's no reason for the countries in particular except to sell more booze in that particular market.
I've worked on a few campaigns of this nature and know for certain the last point is true. We pushed to work with an amazing artist in Egypt for a specific brand, but our client said no because they weren't yet selling their product there.
Campaigns like this have become more an act of cynicism than meaning at this point. Let's appeal to a giant market but without having to spend a lot. Because what's ten thousand bucks and a pack of Krylon? You don't even have to send the entire team on production because there are so many cities to cover it would blow the budget and anyway in exchange for the ten thousand bucks and Krylon, the artists are going to share with their fans on social. hash tag reach, hash tag metrics. Genius.
And in the meantime the potential big idea is squandered in favor of yet another mural. Or seven murals.
I realize Absolut has a history of artist collaborations, working with everyone from Warhol's estate to Keith Haring while he was still alive to writer Douglas Coupland. The difference is all of those were inspired by the bottle and therefore tied to product. I'm all for making a conceptual shift, especially when it's something as lofty as making the world a better place, but only if the idea makes sense and only if it's fresh.
What's next, Absolut? Parkour athletes?
Anna Malmhake - CEO
Craig Johnson - VP Global Marketing
Gaia Gilardini - Global Communications Director
Sina Neubrandt - Global Marketing Manager
Oscar Danielsson - Global Brand Manager
Fredrik Thorsen - Global Head of Digital