Why coffee brand Julius Meinl is jumping on the back of World Poetry Day

The coffee roasting brand Julius Meinl is today encouraging visitors to its distributing cafes to ‘pay with a poem’, as part of a global initiative inspired by World Poetry Day.

Its international marketing manager Carina Leb told The Drum her brand saw the global celebration of prose as an authentic celebration to piggyback on, due to Julius Meinl’s historic Austrian heritage.

"Vienna has a strong coffee house culture, and – especially towards the end of the 19th century – many famous philosophers and writers would meet at these locations in the city to discuss ideas," she said. "We’re looking to bring this culture to life again in a modern way, and World Poetry Day is the perfect platform."

The pay with a poem initiative has been rolled out for one day in more than 30 countries, with poet Robert Montgomery fronting the campaign. Leb explained that the ambitious global campaign has been delivered through the use of creative, PR and digital ‘toolkits’ that have been distributed to participating markets.

To prolong the legacy of the poems penned today, Julius Meinl and Montgomery are set to create a piece of artwork inspired by the work created. This will be revealed in a secret London location later in the year, while smaller installations will pop up in other participating countries.

Montgomery said of the campaign: "I think most people write poetry in adolescence and sort of abandon it in adulthood. With this initiative we're encouraging everyone to reconnect with that forgotten poetic voice inside of them, and giving everyone's voice equal value."

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