Guinness hopes for silver lining as new cloud campaign takes softer approach
AUTUMN is upon us, so that must mean a new Guinness campaign is in the offing. This year's version, which kicks off today, promises to be a little different than previous years and will have a slightly gentler touch than the more recent campaigns for the 'blackstuff'.
The multimillion euro campaign is titled 'The Cloud' and is notable for the fewer people that are used than campaigns gone by. It also features the debut of the strapline 'Made of More'.
The stout's marketing director for Western Europe, Stephen O'Kelly, takes up the story: "The campaign is a little to ones we may have done before. For one thing, the advert is centred on a cloud rather than people, but we have humanised it. It is a benevolent figure but it acts as a metaphor for Guinness rather than people.
"The campaign that will follow the release of the TV advert will be a little less muscular than it has been in previous years, the voice on the ad isn't as deep as has been used before, while there is less emphasis on rugby and strength and that sort of thing," he says.
Despite the changes, Guinness is not trying to change its market. "We are very conscious of where our business is and we won't be changing that. For example, this campaign doesn't concentrate on a female audience over males or vice versa," Mr O'Kelly added.
"Its aim is to make people feel good about themselves and the brand, and we think we've done that."
This campaign is a particularly important one for Guinness.
The success or failure of it will dictate the next several months for the company, and while last week's Arthur's Day was a success when going purely on sales figures for the day, there has been significant blowback for the Guinness brand because of the perception of excess drinking and everything that goes with that on the day.
Directed by seasoned ad man Peter Thwaites, the ads certainly have a cinematic quality to them, aided significantly by the sound track that accompanies it.
For BBDO UK -- which came up with the campaign -- it will be interesting to see what the reaction will be to this change of direction by Guinness.