It's a brave brand that takes on Guinness in its native Ireland. But Heineken is doing just that with a stout brand named "Island's Edge" that promises a taste that's "less bitter" than the traditional black stuff. The brand launched 12 months ago and now, to promote it, Heineken has launched a humorous new spot in which people are also, well, less bitter.
The ad takes place in an Irish pub where an assortment of customers tell stories about events that could have made them bitter and vengeful. But instead, they are philosophical about these events, or even reflect that they turned out all for the best.
For example, one balding man's ex is getting married to a pilot with a full head of fair; however, he graciously pronounces him "a lovely fella." A woman is able to joke about her mis-spelled tattoo that says "love your shelf;" another man reveals everyone has been calling him Gerry rather than Gary for years.
The campaign was created by Publicis Dublin and directed by David Shane of O Positive.
“We loved the idea of people trying to move on or hide their bitterness," said Ger Roe, account director at Publicis Dublin. "David Shane is a master at getting authentic comedic performances out of actors and totally got what we were trying to do. Because much like Island’s Edge Irish stout, the clever and entertaining part is hiding the bitterness. It’s still there, just a bit less of it”.
“Competing in Ireland against one of the world’s biggest brands the first thing we needed to do was be authentic but do it with a bit of personality," he added. "With a key product differentiator of ‘less bitterness’ it gave us a brilliant jumping off point. It also allowed us to leverage that emotional truth about Irish people while giving us an opportunity to differentiate with our brand personality too."