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It's All About the Beer Bottle
By: Brian Keller
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A room at Marcus Bailey Worldwide: 20 creative teams, 10 Creative Directors, 40 Associate Creative Directors, 10 group heads, 30 Account Supervisors, 10 Media Supervisors, and their counterparts in Marcus Bailey Digital Interactive Social Worldwide. Waiting for Creative Chief M. L. Lee.

M. L. Lee: “I was airlifted off one of my islands while vacationing with my wife Dakota and the kids, Fios and Bundle. We messed up Amsterbelgium.”
 
Account Supervisor: “As head of Account Services, we want to go on record that we had strategic problems.”
 
Creative 1: “Account Services is misguided. We had a great concept on all levels; digital, interactive, digital web, non-digital web, digital and non-digital print, digital TV, and the one they play on cars with no pictures…radio. We planned and executed a viral campaign initiated on Mixi and BeBo and every other social media except Digg. Beer has never been shot like this.”
 
M. L. Lee: “I had to take the time to talk to the kids’ nannies and explain to them how to explain to the kids that daddy wouldn’t be just an acre away in the main house. What do you mean you shot beer?”
 
Creative 2: “I was the Art Director. We shot in barley fields all over the country. We had George Clooney pick up barley and shed a tear. It was an emotional connection to a product that I, for one, have never seen before from ANY actor.”
 
Creative 3: “Michael Douglas did the voice, we got Mumford and Sons to perform an original song, and ended with a helicopter shot of Mt. Rushmore while Michael Douglas and George Clooney tagged: ‘If it’s beer…it’s the best barley and hops, and that’s Amsterbelgium and that’s America.”

M. L. Lee: “I’ll find out how this mess affects me from my life coaches. Ingredients, taste…where did you get the idea that anyone would care about taste?”
 
Creative 4: “Everyone?”
 
M. L. Lee: It’s not about beer’s taste, it’s the bottle. Have you seen the wonderful Bud work? They manage to have four black men in a bar be non-threatening to white viewers. They make everyone think they’re commenting on the beauty of a waitress, wearing hardly anything. They made it so insipid that even women weren’t offended. While the audience thinks it’s harmless harassment fun in a bar, you’re directed to, boom, the bottle. You don’t need taste if you have a bottle. A guy walks into the most exotic bar in the world filled with scarred up guys, dangerous exotic women in every color from every part of the world, and there are probably Cobras, too. The guy has the best stubble since Bradley Cooper. There may be bad guys, good guys, smugglers, and all kinds of interesting characters in this bar, and who do all of us look at?”
 
Creative 5: “Who?”
 
M. L. Lee: “The guy that orders the new Heineken Star bottle, which Heineken says “is our limited edition 16oz bottle making its way across the country — and it's dressed to impress.”
 
Creative 5: “Heineken sales are down and there was a huge typo on the bottle.”
 
M. L. Lee: “Who got to pick the most pedestrian Middle American looking non-offensive woman in the whole exotic bar? The guy with the star bottle.”
 
Creative 6: “What will happen to the Amsterbelgium?”
 
M. L. Lee: “I went to Amsterbelgium and got $150, 000,00 for a whole new campaign: A black guy walks into a bar with his white friend and they meet their friends; a white guy and his black friend. They ogle and scream at, we think, four almost-naked waitresses representing every woman in the world. It’s not women they harbor ardor for, it’s four bottles. They are black on one side and white on the other. Then Bruce Willis and one of the Wayans brothers who is popular sing Ebony and Ivory (remix by Tyler the Creator). The tag: ‘Amsterbelgium. The new very-limited-edition black and white bottle. Dressed to thrill.’ See, my staff, you don’t need taste.”

People love beer. Maybe we can think of interesting ways to sell beer and not bottles. Maybe we can sell beer by illustrating the taste. People love sports. Maybe we can sell athletic wear by making athletics look like fun instead of a war. We love our cars. Maybe we can help sell a car by not having cars do figure 8s and go 60 backwards. Maybe we can sell a lot of stuff by using our brains and talent to figure out compelling ways to sell the products themselves by concentrating on the products themselves. We guarantee to whomever does it first and well, it will go viral.


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About the Author
Brian Keller is the Creative Director at teeny agency in Baltimore. He graduated from the University of Maryland (English), went to grad school at NYU (Cinema Studies), & attends University of Baltimore School of Law.

Brian's been working primarily in the digital space for years but enjoys all communications avenues.

He has built the creative departments at two agencies.

He likes skateboarding with his son. He also falls off his skateboard and amuses his son. When not amusing his son or riding bikes or playing basketball or working he writes for Beyond Madison Avenue & that's why Beyond Madison Avenue appears twice in this sentence.

Find him online here and at www.teenyagency.com.
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