Ceres Beer – #ivoteanyway (How a beer did what the government could not do)

I’m an Executive Creative Director. And if you ask people who work with me,  they’ll tell you that when it comes to judging our own works, I’m always hypercritical. That’s why I’ve never posted here any campaign coming from my agency.

But today I’m pretty proud of this project, so I decided to share it. Hope you’ll like it like I do.

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Election time is near and Italian politicians, the most aged in Europe, never miss an opportunity to show their distance from young people and their needs. For a bureaucratic obstacle, thousands of students who live outside the country (e.g. for the Erasmus program) will not be able to vote from abroad. Despite the calls of the European Union and the students’ protest, no one can solve the problem. Ceres, one of the most popular beers in Italy, decides to prove that these guys are better than those who represent them in parliament.

Our goals were to boost the brand awareness becoming the main supporters of the movement and to bring the problem to the attention of everyone, inspiring the conversation about the right to vote and the sense of responsibility of young Italians. We knew that it would have also improved the reputation of Ceres, a beer with a high alcohol content: we wanted to show everyone that the guys who love Ceres are responsible and mature people, that care for themselves and for their country’s future.

Ceres is a strong beer. It believes it’s always worth to take a position, to stand, even if it means making difficult or inconvenient choices. Even if maybe you won’t win. This is the essence of the brand, it is called “Inglorious Heroism”, and it is summed up by the pay-off  “The town needs heroes.” Students in Erasmus are real heroes in the midst of their quest to discover the world. These young heroes had been wronged and Ceres decided to help them to vote anyway. Italy is an old, tired country that needs the energy of young people. As the slogan of this operation says, “Italy needs of Heroes.”

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We contacted representatives of the students in major European cities. We told them we wanted to organize symbolic elections to make them vote anyway. We launched the twitter hash tag #iovotolostesso (#ivoteanyway), we sent groups in each city a kit with everything they needed to run and publicize the symbolic elections: facsimile ballots, ballot boxes, flyers and posters. We also sent them a few packs of beer to celebrate at the end. The kit also contained instructions on how to create video appeals that students would send us and would become part of a collective promo video. The video was posted on the web, the students used it to spread the word and we sent it to mainstream media.

More groups spontaneously joined in. The symbolic elections took place in 26 European cities on the same days of the Italian real elections. We sent the symbolic results to the media a few hours before the close of official polling stations.

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Results:

For the cause:

Thousands of students from 26 European cities joined the initiative. The protest achieved unprecedented visibility on all the national media: TV, newspapers magazines, radios, social media, news website and blogs. The operation opened a debate all around the country. #ivoteanyway became a tweet trend with more than 10.000 tweets in 10 days.

For the brand:

Brand search frequency on google: +470% in 10 days. Ceres was the most cited brand during the election week. People reached: 20 millions, one third of the italian population. Media investment: less than € 5,000.

Advertising Agency: Bcube, Milan
Executive Creative Director: Francesco Bozza
Creative Director: Sergio Spaccavento, Andrea Stanich
Creative Team: Sergio Spaccavento, Andrea Stanch, Alessandro Sciarpelletti, Silvia Savoia
Edit: Danilo Carlani, Alessio Dogana
Year: 2013



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