Last year, we posted a story about Heineken fawning all over Lagunitas Brewing Co. (which it now 100 percent owns), and how Lagunitas was helping Heineken re-strategize its marketing to new customers — specifically non-traditional TV advertising. Heineken’s chief financial officer, Laurence Debroux, said in the interview.
“We’ve learned a lot from them in terms of marketing. Viral marketing, using social networks, you know these guys don’t do any TV advertising at all. They use a lot of digital, and we’re learning a lot here.”
That learning now has action. According to an interesting article on Digiday (a digital content, advertising and marketing website), Heineken is pulling big money from TV and placing that ad and marketing revenue with Google and Facebook. The social nature of the craft beer movement and the American beer lover is a bit of a different animal for Heineken. In the past, the Dutch-brewing company seemed focused on global marketing campaigns and major sponsorship deals for things like the Rugby World Cup, James Bond movies and celebrity sales pitches from the likes of Benicio Del Toro.
According to the Digiday article:
“We’re seeing in some cases digital spend is overtaking TV spend like a lot of brands because we’re realizing that’s where consumers are spending most of their time,” [Nourdin] Rejeb said [Heineken global manager for digital]. “That’s not to say TV isn’t important to us because it is; it’s just that the increase is definitely going to the digital.”
Online marketing definitely requires a fine balance. Being precise with the length of your message and finding the right channel to target specific customers is imperative. Because you can spend a lot of money easily and not get the results you’re looking for. Back to Digiday:
In the U.S., for example, many of Heineken’s videos on Facebook are viewed for less than three seconds. To counter this, Heineken has pushed all its messaging to the start of videos to get people to stop scrolling. The brewer is trying to limit its Facebook ads to six seconds, the length that Facebook has said is ideal, citing a recent test with Tropicana.
Today’s ad climate has many brands questioning whether they have overspent on digital. P&G made headlines when it axed $140 million worth of digital ads in the last quarter, questioning the ads’ effectiveness. Still, the brewer is upping its spend with Facebook and Google, saying they provide creative support.
Read the entire feature right here. Definitely good copy. Kudos to writer Seb Joseph. And thanks to Lagunitas for teaching this Big Beer company how to market better to Americans. Great job, everyone.