Heineken pays tribute to non-drinkers in a January push for its Heineken 0.0 zero alcohol beer, a historical romp through the centuries to show attitudes to teetotallers and are changing.
The global spot, by Publicis Italy/Le Pub, depicts how, from the times of the Vikings until relatively recently, non-drinkers have been made to feel left out, socially excluded or humiliated on social occasions. That's particularly obvious when they're trying to say "cheers" with a non-alcoholic drink, so the various scenarios depict that through the ages.
There's a "Bridgerton"-style Regency scene in which a woman is shunned for drinking tea; a 1920s scene in which a man gets filthy looks for holding up a milkshake for a toast; a '70s groove moment where a juice box is the culprit and a 1980s-style office where a man gets short shrift for imbibing a soda. Finally, the action flips forward to the present day, where the protagonist gets a bottle of Heineken 0.0 beer and can finally say "cheers" to no alcohol. The ad, directed by Rodrigo Saavedra via Hobby Film, is set to Stevie Wonder's "Superstition" and benefits from diverse casting and great costumes.
It's not Heineken's first ad featuring its zero-alcohol beer (previous efforts have memorably included James Bond as a "Dry Spy"), but the push comes as it faces more competition in the non-alcoholic drinks space as brands target increasing numbers of consumers trying to moderate their drinking, especially during "Dry January."
Corona is launching its own zero-alcohol beer "Sunbrew" this month, blended with Vitamin D, while brands such as Seedlip have experienced huge success in the non-alcoholic spirits space.
With this campaign, Heineken also hopes to show that non-alcoholic beer can be enjoyed in social and evening settings as well as on individual occasions and during the day. "It’s about making sure everyone feels included during social drinking moments, even if they are choosing not to drink alcohol," said Bram Westenbrink, global brand director at Heineken, in a statement.
“With so many of us looking for alternatives to alcohol when at social and evening occasions, especially during periods like 'Dry January,' as is common in many regions, the non-alcoholic beer segment has exploded over the last five years," added Westenbrink. "We’ve worked extremely hard to make sure Heineken 0.0 has been at the forefront of that trend." The company debuted Heineken 0.0 in 2017 and this past November, Westenbrink said the brew reached a key milestone of distribution across 100 markets.
The campaign is running across TV and social in multiple countries including Austria, Brazil, Canada, Croatia, Italy, Poland, Spain and the USA, throughout 2022, and also includes digital, out-of-home, promotional merchandise and more.