Bacardi taps Facebook’s new immersive mobile ads to deliver quality global messages at scale

Bacardi has become the first alcohol brand to use Facebook’s new mobile ad format Immersive Canvas as it looks to improve the quality of its creative on mobile worldwide.

The rum brand is hoping the new forrmat, which allows for microsite-like experiences without forcing users to leave the social network, will spark more engaging content given that the creative has to be created specifically for the ad format. Facebook promises that Immersive Canvas will allow marketers to develop captivating experiences with native speed – something Bacardi expects will help engage the millennial audience it is targeting.

The brand’s activity forms part of a new advertising campaign (launched 12 October) for the demographic as Bacardi makes a step change in how the brand is marketed, moving away from provenance and into cultural relevance. The campaign features a house party taking place on the back of a truck which picks up more and more people as it drives along.

Speaking to The Drum Mauricio Vergara, chief marketing officer for North America and global lead for Bacardi rum, said the campaign on Facebook will tap into different millennial passion points such as music, sports and arts to provide an “always on” approach that creates both dynamacy and relevancy for consumers.

“When we were in the age of TV only it was just a 30-second ad that you would put out and consumers would see the same thing. Now what we are trying to do is have different pieces of content that work differently to make creative a lot more dynamic so consumers are going to be interacting with the brand in that way. We want to make sure we have enough content that actually is always providing new news and different takes on the brand story for the consumer.”

Vergara said Bacardi will look to work with partners such as emerging singers to create bespoke adverts via Immersive Canvas. “That’s the type of content we are going to be generating which will tell the band story but through the lens of the different platforms that our consumers are engaging [with],” he added.

So far brands including Gatorade, Michael Kors, Mr Porter, and Carrefour Spain are the only brands to test out Facebook’s new format, delivering slicker, magazine-like content that looks much higher quality than existing ads.

The arrival of Immersive Canvas alongside the 2016 slated launch of Facebook’s internal DSP has added to grumblings within the agency world that the likes of Facebook and Google are threatening the relationship between media agency and client. However Vergara is steadfast that the input of media agencies when striking ad partnerships is imperative.

“What we are doing right now is we are definitely working hand in hand with OMD our media agency to create these partnerships with Facebook or Instagram or Vice,” he said. “Although we are engaging with the media platforms directly its always with our agency partner at the table since they have the expertise on how to optimise these platforms.

“The relationship will change in terms of [it will be] more [of a] three way partnership but still our media agency plays a huge role in making sure we are making the right deals and maximising the benefits out of these relationships.”

Bacardi’s ‘The Truck’ campaign launched in the US yesterday and will roll out to other markets including Canada, Europe and Latin America over the coming months.