Everyone that drinks beer has that staple labels they live by, whether out at the bars, at home or hanging out with friends.
I don’t drink that much beer at all. Except for one – Red Stripe.
Maybe it’s the little Jamaican in me. But besides not finding it as harsh as other brands, I love it and am fiercely loyal to it (and can now justify the yellow T-shirt with the famous logo I got years ago when visiting my relatives).
But it’s kinda hard to come by. Out on the town, very few bars seem to serve them. So I’m forced to imbibe mixed drinks instead.
It’s not sold at the Beer Store, either – I have to scour the shelves for the six-pack of stubbies at the liquor store in the Imported section. And even the quantity of the stock’s small in size.
So, given how hard it is to actually find, you’d think they’ve have NO ad campaign whatsoever, right? Strangely enough, no. I discovered they have commercials.
Obviously, in Jamaica, they’re going to be advertising everywhere. Take a look at this commercial touting the virtues of Red Stripe:
It’s easygoing. It’s leisurely. But it’s too boring and amateurish for an audience outside the Caribbean (although I did suddenly have the urge to find a beach where I could sit with a stubby and watch the tide roll in and out).
So how DO you sell a beer that’s sold or drunk in very few places?
As it turns out, with a SERIES of commercials (which I guess ran in the States during football games earlier this year).
The secret weapon in wooing that fickle 21-50, like-their-Coors-with-their-beer-nuts target audience? A black dude with a Natural and a Jamaican accent wearing a suit and a Red Stripe sash.
I watched them. There’s like, I dunno, 10, 12 of them? It’s weird. Watching them, they’re not all that funny. Trying to explain them to someone else kind of is.
But here’s probably the best one out of the bunch:
As annoying as the commercials are, I’m afraid the next time I have a hankerin’ for the Red Stripe, the first thing that’ll pop into my head is that floating, disembodied, smiling face, cheering: