The Amstel Light brand had lost its relevance in the 15 years since it hit the U.S. market. With declining sales, Amstel Light was barely on the radar of its target audience - men, age 25-34. It had become the 'safe' beer - no real personality, nothing distinctive, no real reason to be a part of timely guy conversations - and it began to communicate in a 'safe' way too. Amstel Light needed to show guys that it was still relevant, and, internally, the brand needed a winning effort to prove to decision makers that it could still break through.
'When you are the underdog, sometimes you need to steal the spotlight.' That was the advice Amstel Light needed to hear in 2011. Our goal was to generate mass publicity, very quickly…especially online where the brand was especially light and had no presence…and use that surge to wake up the organization to the Amstel brand again and show it still had fight in it. Research was focused on:
With a tiny budget, the brand achieved:
Inspired a Yahoo! Sports guessing game contest, an 8-minute ESPN on-air roundtable discussion, a Boston radio call-in contest and a Photoshop contest on the Puck Daddy hockey blog
An MTV reality show star falsely claimed the beer, sparking coverage and becoming 'Amstel Light Girl'
Success led to significant incremental investment from management to execute nimble engagement tactics. The brand re-evaluated its partner roster and shifted to non-traditional thinking and new mediums for creative consumer engagement