- Ketel One Vodka partnered with Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon to sponsor the second season of his YouTube series, "Break the Ice," which combines an interview format with skating and was developed by digital studio Portal A, according to press materials provided to Marketing Dive.
- The skater takes a different notable guest for a spin on the ice and to chat during each 8-10 minute episode. In the first season, which debuted earlier this year, Rippon and his guest would stop at one point for a hot chocolate. In season two, they'll be drinking Ketel One martinis as they take a break from skating. Ketel One will also sponsor a highlight of one moment from each episode.
- Guests appearing on the show this season include: Bobby Berk from "Queer Eye," Zach Villa from "American Horror Story" and Jackie Tohn from "Glow." Episodes air every Wednesday starting Oct. 30 through Dec. 18.
Ketel One is embracing social video as well as Adam Rippon's popularity as a skater and advocate for inclusivity to cut through the ad clutter and engage people who stream content on YouTube. The effort could help the brand deepen its connection with millennials, who tend to prefer spirits and seek brands that stand for something. Vodka is the most popular alcoholic beverage for this age group, with 70% of millennials preferring it, according to data from Break Thru Beverage Group.
"Adam's message of inclusivity in democratizing his craft is inspiring to us as a brand, and we can't wait for viewers to see what marvelous moments unfold on the ice over the course of this season," Jim Ruane, brand director of Ketel One Vodka, said in a press release.
"Break the Ice" scored more than 3.5 million views across platforms during season one, per press materials. By serving Ketel One martinis during the show and sponsoring a highlight clip that can be easily shared on social, the brand has a chance to come across in a more authentic and engaging way than had it used a traditional ad format.
Embedding brands into original content has become a popular strategy for advertisers looking to reach consumers who don't want to be interrupted with annoying ads. Wild Turkey recently partnered with Complex Networks on a social video series in which Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey sits down for a glass of bourbon with a variety of guests.
Ketel One's sponsorship of Rippon's show comes after the brand's Emmy Awards campaign that promoted a custom Emmy Awards Cocktail Kit for creating eight "Marvelous Mule" drinks at home. Both efforts support the brand's ongoing efforts to make its drink appeal to younger consumers.