Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Dad Drank..?

Beginning December with liquor ads is appropriate: Christmas is just ‘round the corner. The coming season is filled with opportunities to drink, drink, drink. (But, like, you know, do it responsibly.)

I’ve been reminded of two utterly different ad concepts for brown liquors since I ran across them in one issue of a single magazine: One full-page from Knob Creek (top left) and one for Canadian Club (bottom left). The campaigns couldn’t be more different.

Knob Creek’s ads have been praised as highly designed; the look is metro-modern. This small-batch bourbon’s after the upscale drinker, so maybe it’s not twee* to come up with a slogan like “Drink Life Deeply” but it feels that way. I also would have liked to spend more time hanging over a stylish bar drinking a bourbon by myself. I never looked as good as that model right down to the mildly unshaven look.

So I’m probably jealous to prefer the Canadian Club campaign, “Damn Right Your Dad Drank It.”

It’s a masterpiece of subversion and particularly evocative for me. I can see my daddy in the various photographs. Actually, I can see me because that’s the Dad-Gen to which the CC folks are referring.

I’m enjoyed the daylights out of these ads, even though I’m not in the target demographic. Energy BBDO, Chicago, has nailed the thinking, the styling and the concept.

My daddy, BTW, drank Old Overholt and was proud of it. When was the last time you hear anyone drinking rye?

Both campaigns are heavily covered in the trade press and the blogosphere. Steve Hall, tireless marcom observer who runs the AdRants social network, has portrayed both campaigns – you can read about them here and here.

As a final note, Catharine Taylor, blogging on Adverganza, highlighted the Canadian Club campaign, too. She mentioned the politically incorrect nature of the ads – echoed by one anonymous commenter, “Yes, it’s amazing how the ads demean women and exclude minorities at the same time.” Right!

Dear Whoever-You-Are-Anonymous: It’s liquor advertising, dear. Review the marketing brief and lighten up.

*Close enough: “…affectedly or excessively dainty, delicate, cute, or quaint,” Merriam-Webster.com, and appreciation for a job well done to Energy BBDO.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting to note that both campaigns come from the same company (Beam Global Spirits and Wine) and the same agency (Energy BBDO). Clearly they are not one-trick ponies.