Tanqueray hits the links with novel Web campaign

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In a twist on the traditional online model of placing banners to drive traffic to a Web site, Tanqueray breaks this week an ad banner campaign that its Web site will support.

Created by iDeutsch, the interactive arm of Deutsch, New York, the banners feature an interactive golf game called Tanqueray Links Classic with nine holes spread over eight partner sites. The last hole will reside at the redesigned Tanqueray site. The partners are Bloomberg online, CMPNet's Filemine, Hollywood Stock Exchange, Lycos, Music Boulevard and online sites for Playboy, Sporting News and USA Today.

"It's not about a Web site, but about how to market online," said Adam Levine, senior VP-director of interactive client services, iDeutsch. "The site is really up there to support the online campaign."


RoseMarie Ferraro, Schiefflelin & Sommerset Co. brand manager for Tanqueray, said it didn't make sense to try to be a destination site.

"We advertise in a magazine because we want to get to the people who read that magazine. We wouldn't necessarily create our own magazine," she said.

IDeutsch is buying 3 million to 5 million impressions across the eight sites. Users can enter the game at any of the eight sites. If they click to the second hole, they will land on another co-branded Tanqueray and partner site.

A large customized ad also appears featuring Mr. Jenkins, the older, but hip and pithy ad character for Tanqueray. The custom Playboy Online ad shows Mr. Jenkins with drink in hand and the line, "Mr. Jenkins is easily distracted by bunnies on the golf course." For Bloomberg, the ad reads, "Mr. Jenkins' swing is considered a valuable commodity."

While the player is not on the partner's home page, the content is live and the user can click through the game/ad page to get content. People who play all nine holes and register at Tanqueray's site can get perks from the partners, such as golf balls from Playboy Online and $10 off a Music Boulevard purchase.

"A lot of packaged-good marketers have wasted a lot of money on fancy Web sites with lots of content when consumers don't want their content from advertisers," said Jim Nail, analyst with Forrester Research. "It makes more sense to put up an engaging, interactive banner and put it where people are."


IDeutsch will also track users more closely than just a click-through. In an earlier campaign this year, iDeutsch put Tanqueray recipes in banners. While the banners got only an industry-average 2% click rate, about 70% of those people printed out the recipes.

Mr. Nail said, "This kind of program combines the best of branding and direct marketing because they're not selling online--no one is going to order a bottle of booze on the Web--but you're engaging them in an experience that's going to leave a lasting impression. And you're doing it in a way that you can measure."

Copyright August 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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