Case Study: Barcardi continues the summer spirit with RumShack app

Appetite Creative partner with Shazam to release Bacardi app, RumShack.

To highlight the spirit of Bacardi and continue the fun associated with the brand's summer rumshacks, Appetite Creative and Shazam collaborated to create the RumShack app, releasing a series of rum cocktail recipes, opportunities to win rum and access to nearby Rumshack bars.

Background:

In 1814, a man named Facundo was born in a town called Sites in Catalonia, Spain. After emigrating to Cuba 16 years later, he developed a strong passion for rum. At the time, rum was considered cheap and unrefined, and Facundo wanted to change this. He tried to tame the flavour and started experimenting with new types of yeasts, filtering techniques and using white oak barrels. The final product was the first clear rum in the world. The man’s full name was Facundo Bacardí Massó, and he had just invented the eponymous Bacardi white rum.

Bacardi Limited nows boasts a portfolio of more than 200 brands and labels. The company has grown to employ 6,000 people and manufacture over four continents. It sells over 200 million bottles per year with sales in more than 150 countries and is still run by the same family.

In 2018, Appetite Creative were brought on to help launch various Rum Shacks around the world. From London to Sydney, Bacardi offered a private beach-inspired shack space to eat, drink and relax with friends, family, and colleagues.

Decorated with bamboo, palm trees, floral prints, and non-stop summery vibes, the shacks enhanced the sunshine's spirit and made them perfect watering holes for knocking back some rum.

Appetite Creative partnered with Shazam to create an experiential app that would be almost as fun as the shacks themselves.

Strategy:

Bacardi and Shazam were both aware that standard advertising is not good enough any more, what with consumers being able to skip commercials on streaming sites like Netflix and Amazon Video or download adblockers.

The aim for the RumShack app was for Bacardi to reach consumers emotionally and engage them through an experience that they actually want to be a part of.

The goal was to create lasting impressions on customers and provide them with content to share with others. Consumers could experience what their lives would be like if they injected a little of Bacardi, rather than being mechanically sold the product.

Experiential marketing is useful for transforming and elevating connections that brands build with their consumers. The Rumshack app provided consumers with a memorable experience; something that needed to be augmented and highlighted.

Process:

Using Bacardi’s own stylings and opening via Shazam, Appetite Creative created an app that enhanced the experiential experience by providing more activities for consumers to get involved with.

Upon opening the app, the user received a Rum Fact of the Day, alongside other Bacardi treasures, such as how the Cuban revolution had a part to play in the company’s story.

Users were then transported to a menu that contained the following options:

  • Perfect Serve: A guide for users who don’t know what sort of cocktail they want. By answering simple questions, such as “Ginger, Tropical, or mixer?” “Fiery or Sweet?” the app helps them find the perfect rum cocktail recipe.
  • Rum Roulette: This game provides users with the chance to win free rum. By simply spinning the wheel, users could access different parts of the app and even get Bacardi rum delivered right to their door - if they were lucky enough.
  • Make at home: A variety of easy-to-make cocktail recipes for users looking for a little inspiration for homemaking drinks.
  • Your Local Rum Shack: Using the location services, the app directed thirsty users to their nearest Rumshack, wherever they may be.

Rum Roulette and Rum fact of the day created plenty of revisiting opportunities for app users, while the chance to win prizes and the live rum shack location service provided incentive for them to use it in the first place.

Users returned to the app on average at least twice, each with a decent session length as users spent around two and a half minutes on each use. The app exceeded expectations and helped to improve the brand's awareness.

Get The Drum Newsletter

Build your marketing knowledge by choosing from daily news bulletins or a weekly special.