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Budweiser China launches world cup collectible bottles

Budweiser China has released a collection of limited-edition World Cup beer bottles as part of the brand’s global sponsorship campaign.

The brand has launched eight unique bottle designs featuring the national colours of some of China’s favourite football teams, including England, Russia, Germany, France, Portugal, Argentina, Spain and Brazil.

The designs, which also feature Budweiser’s bowtie logo design, aims to celebrate the beer brand’s global sponsorship of the 2018 Fifa World Cup and tap into China’s passion for the event, which has been embraced by the nation, despite not fielding a team in the competition.

China media reports suggest 100,000 Chinese fans will travel to the tournament, which has also attracted strong sponsorship support from Chinese brands including smartphone giant Vivo, property and entertainment giant Wanda, Hisense, Mengniu, Dixing and Luci.

The collectable bottles, which were created by brand design agency Jones Knowles Ritchie Shanghai, will be available across 200,000 touch points in 25 cities in China and will feature in TV, OOH and in-store marketing activity.

Joseph Lee, marketing vp, APAC North, Budweiser, Anheuser-Busch InBev, said: “With positive feedback on WeChat, requests for increased production volumes and extension of the design to the aluminium cans too, we’re thrilled the collectible bottles capture the celebratory, upbeat and premium experience of the Budweiser brand. What started as impactful packaging has become extendable and scalable across communications.”

René Chen, partner and managing director, Jones Knowles Ritchie Shanghai, said the challenge was to create something that stood out, “in a sea of sponsorship advertising” and elevated the brand’s sponsorship beyond logo placement.

“While it’s often a forgotten component of the marketing mix, design, when done smartly, can make a big impact by itself. At first glance, the FIFA design may look simple – easy, even. But often the simplest designs are the hardest to crack,” said Chen.

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