Objective: create a campaign which revives the Four Loko brand.
Four Loko is a line of malt beverages that was extremely popular from 2007 to 2010. Originally named "Four Loko" for the four main ingredients - caffeine, guarana, taurine, and alcohol - the brand had to change their formula in 2010 after negative press and pressure from the FDA. Even with this formula change, Four Loko hasn't been able to shed the "blackout in a can" reputation.
Four Loko's reputation is in the trash because people associate them with binge drinking, jail and regret. Customer acquisition is not Four Loko's problem, but retention is.
CURRENT CONSUMER: THE CORE
Rebellious social leaders.
Younger - college and early 20s.
Their week revolves around weekends, and weekends revolve around parties and bars.
See Four Loko as a tool to have fun on a budget.
TARGET CONSUMER: THE Defectors
Older - around 22-30
These were once Four Loko drinkers but have since graduated to more premium options like White Claw and Pinnacle Vodka
Their week revolves around work, and weekends are for recouping and catching up with friends and family.
Objective: Get Four Loko to grow up with it's consumer base.
Insight: Young adults haven't stopped drinking. They've just switched up the hours that they do drink.
Our drinking gets more spaced out.
According to a 30-year research study done by the Institute of Epidemiology and Health, while binge drinking slows down or stops entirely as we age, daily drinking increases.
The way we go out changes.
As we age, a Friday or Saturday night out feels more like a special occasion than a given, and brunch replaces bars and clubs.
Everything starts and ends earlier.
You would be hard pressed to find anyone under 25 at a bar before 11. This is because as we enter our late 20s, our nights tend to start and end earlier.
Opportunity: Brunch. The term “brunch” first appeared in Punch magazine in 1895 to describe a Sunday meal for “Saturday-night carousers” that started at noon, but featured breakfast fare. Since then, brunch has made it socially acceptable to drink during the day, and is responsible for the overwhelming popularity of mixed drinks like Mimosas and Bloody Mary’s.
STRATEGY: Take Four Loko from binging to brunching.
The creative campaign
The Four Loko Brunch Cocktail Collaboration
Brunch drinks are lighter than traditional night-time drinks. The goal is to have fun but still see the sun set. Brunch-friendly options like Mimosas and Bellinis are lighter on the alcohol and easier to drink than an Old Fashioned or a Long Island. To make Four Loko more brunch friendly, we used it as a mixer rather than a stand-alone drink and used ingredients that help it pair well with brunch classics like eggs benedict or waffles.
To start, I tested every Four Loko flavor and created detailed tasting notes, including flavor and aroma.
Once I had the tasting notes down, I created some recipes. I compiled the best ones into a full brunch cocktail book (available upon request).
Cheers to inspiring a newfound love for Four Loko.