Johnnie Walker steps forward with ‘The Walkers’ to revive dormant social spaces

Scotch whisky brand Johnnie Walker is targeting global markets with a campaign that sees it partner with local cultural figureheads in over 10 countries to encourage people to rediscover the joy of walking.

Supporting local venues and bars, the initiative will tap cultural ‘changemakers’ in each market to lead the social surge, such as K-pop icon CL, who will host a series of events in South Korea, and Thai singer Violette Wautier, who will use her voice to help revitalize street culture.

In Columbia hip-hop group ChocQuibTown will launch a series of similar events, while in Greece singer Konstantinos Argiro will spread his passion for music in a number of events as well as a TV ad.

Intended to revive dormant social spaces, ‘The Walkers’ forms part of the brand’s latest ‘Keep Walking’ campaign, which encourages people to put their best foot forward.

Conceived in partnership with Vice creative agency Virtue, the timely campaign forms the central plank of a broader commitment to create and fund social experiences to help bring people back together.

Julie Bramham, Johnnie Walker global brand director, said: “For our latest chapter, we wanted to explore how we could support our partner communities across the world as people start socializing again. The Walkers program is a meaningful way to work with locally loved and valued voices to help reinvigorate social spaces like bars, clubs and venues to help get local culture back on its feet and moving again.”

Nate Woodhead, Virtue’s group creative director, added: “We wanted to create a campaign that honored those changemakers driving action at a time when the world felt powerless. When we looked at the context of each of our key markets it was clear that reconnecting people through social and cultural experiences was the perfect starting point for The Walkers program.”

In November it was Africa’s turn to Keep Walking when the brand published a feature-length documentary showcasing the work of creators on the continent.