Think ‘whisky’, and you might think of quiet nights by a roaring fire. Think whisky, and you might even recoil in fear, not knowing the right label to pick or how it should be poured. With such misconceptions and anxiety surrounding the world of single malt, the category was facing a particularly low rate of sales. Step forward Glenfiddich, who challenged us to shake up the drink’s image and offer a refreshing approach to their famous Speyside product.
We knew the biggest opportunity for change was in the independent on-trade channel. In other words, the bar staff and customers themselves. Up to a third of drinkers are willing to change their drink of choice based on staff recommendation, so inspiring the people behind the bar would be our first step.
“Unlearn Whisky” became the rallying cry for our Glenfiddich campaign. The message was delivered in three major ways to ensure a complete immersion into the on-trade sector.
First came education, with a bar staff training programme that featured bespoke digital lessons. Shot on location in London, the films were led by our talented mixer Sven, who showed the way on the perfect pour. An army of mystery shoppers was also on hand to reward those staff who recommended what they’d learned.
A full collection of disruptive visuals was also placed in bars, challenging the myths around whisky, and inviting customers to try Glenfiddich in more ways than one.
Finally, we offered big rewards for bar participation. The more they encouraged people to “unlearn whisky”, the more they got back in return. This ensured our kits were widespread, and that the rate of sale went skywards.
Along with a lot of satisfied customers and “unlearned” minds, the real success story came from our results.
Not only did 8,250 bars take part, but the Glenfiddich case sales went up by 4730%.
Now that’s definitely worth raising a dram for…