How Heineken’s evolving music strategy aims to ensure it doesn’t get ‘left behind’
Heineken has for decades associated itself with music to push its beer to its core audience but has now set course on a new strategy of co-creating musical experiences as it looks to avoid getting “left behind” at festivals and events.
The beer brand has kicked off a new global campaign named #LiveYourMusic, created in partnership with Publicis Worldwide, to secure its position within live music and encourage millennials to get out and enjoy music in a social setting rather than streaming music alone.
The advert shows a number of people in various settings singing alone badly to Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’, before coming together in a large stadium where their solo efforts turn in to a crowd-strong performance. The TVC will be accompanied by experiential activity, local digital activations, new packaging and bottle designs.
Speaking to The Drum Anuraag Trikha, Heineken’s global brand communication director, said the new campaign has been conceived in response to the changing ways that people consume music and appetite for interaction.
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“One of the biggest opportunities that we have is not just to be present in venues with artists but have a point of view which is a reason for us to be there. Music is a tough beast to crack, because people come to the events for the artist and the venue and brands get left behind almost so we felt that is was important for us not to just be behind the artist but be the reason why consumers come to these events.
“We noticed that because music is now free and people are streaming all the time it has become a solitary passion that people just plug their headphones in, it’s very private. That is a threat for a brand like Heineken that wants to connect people and open up their world. We felt that it is important to take a position which is encouraging people to not just to listen to music but live it through all their senses in a way that can be a social experience.”
As part of the campaign Heineken is experimenting with technology that will allow fans to choose the music being played by a DJ using wristbands that light up red or green. The brand is also playing with brain wave mapping technology in Asia.
Music is a space that is dominated by a number of alcohol brands such as Jack Daniel’s and Budweiser who are all vying to claim consumers, something that Trikha said Heineken has tried to cut through by using a different tone of voice.
“It is the tone of voice of the campaign and trying to not take itself too seriously and yet be iconic. What Heineken is able to do is create a surprising medley of experiences that are happening every night around the world. You can go to any city in the world and you can go to a gig that Heineken is part of, so the jigsaw of our music experiences that we provide you can get people to go to Timbuktu or Tokyo because we are able to share peoples love for live music and I think that is what makes us different”.
He added that the biggest difference is that Heineken has evolved from sponsoring music to “co creating experiences” around music.
“We have as a brand the credibility now to design music experiences with artists and then mix our core confidence of being able to bring the best of the music around the word to your doorstep…something that we are actively working on we are trying to stop being a sponsor of music and creating experiences around the world.”