- Heineken enlisted actors Angela Kinsey and Brian Baumgartner, aka Angela and Kevin from the iconic NBC series, "The Office," to star in a new campaign promoting an alcohol-free beer called Heineken 0.0, according to information provided to Marketing Dive. The "Bring Your Beer to Work Day" campaign brings these two co-stars into a real office of the television show's fans.
- The campaign centers around a YouTube video starring the two actors promoting April 26 as "Bring Your Beer to Work Day." Social media plays a large part in the activation. The creative is being supported by paid social and partnerships with 40 influencers. In addition, consumers within eight major markets can participate by asking the Twitter handle @Heineken_US to deliver the new beer to their office on April 26. The brand is also using the hashtag #NowYouCan to get people across the country to share their workplace celebrations.
- The ad's concept, which was developed in collaboration with Minneapolis-based agency Fast Horse, promotes Heineken 0.0 as a choice for when people want to celebrate with beer, but don't want to consume alcohol.
The partnership underscores the enduring appeal of a TV show whose final episode aired six years ago yet remains one of the most popular shows on Netflix today. As Netflix's audience continues to grow, it is keeping some older programs top-of-mind for consumers and savvy marketers like Heineken see an opportunity to broaden the appeal of their marketing messages by partnering with actors from these shows.
Heineken hopes to leverage the popularity of "The Office" to help it address a challenge it faces — beer sales overall are declining, a trend that is particularly pronounced among millennials. While Heineken appears to be bucking the downward trend, its new campaign shows how it is trying to widen its appeal as pressure on the beer category increases. According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, the Beer Institute revealed that in 2017 drinkers chose beer only 49.7% of the time, down from 60.8% in the mid 1990s. Millennials overall drink less alcohol than other consumer groups, and when they do choose to drink alcohol, they are moving away from beer.
With Heineken 0.0, the beer brand is looking to offer additional product lines to entice people who like to celebrate, but don't want the buzz. Showing people drinking alcohol-free beer in a real office plays into the trend of companies offering perks like beer in the office for millennial employees while providing a sense of authenticity. Heineken's TV ad even shows a slide about how Heineken increases morale and productivity in the workplace.
Video is a strong choice of medium to deliver the message, as 85% of millennials say they've purchased a product or service after watching a video, according to Brightcove's "2018 Video Marketing Survey." The paid social and partnerships with influencers could further cement the campaign's messaging around entertainment, celebration and fun. Using social media to promote contests is a great way for brands to connect directly with consumers and build social momentum and the potential for going viral. For example, Busch Beer ran a social media contest to engage amateur athletes that play in amateur softball leagues around the country with free swag and beer.