Sometimes it's hard to get the recipe just right.
Case in point: 72andSunny's first work for Coors Light (since adding the brand last September), which tries to widen the product's appeal with an aspirational approach that's a bit unexpected for the category.
Since this is Coors, born and bred in the Rockies, mountains naturally come into play. In the minute-long spot below, we're told these mountains come in all shapes and sizes. "What would we be … without our mountains," the voiceover begins. "Without the things that stand in our way. That push us further. That frighten us. That inspire us."
Intense monochrome images flit past—a guy riding a bull, a woman running a tough obstacle course. As in The Wizard of Oz, color returns to the film as we pan to the Coors beer plant. "We are the Coors Family of Golden, Colorado," the narrator says. "And our mountain is brewing the world's most refreshing beer."
Elina Vives, Coors' senior director of marketing, says the work strives to capture "a universal insight that transcends gender, age and ethnicity, which is especially important as we strive to have our marketing better reflect the culturally diverse world in which our consumers live."
The challenge, per 72andSunny partner and executive creative director Jason Norcross, was to craft "a story that looks at challenges as opportunities and celebrates the personal, metaphorical mountains we all have to climb. By doing that, we are not only getting at what makes Coors Light special, but making it stand for an idea even bigger than the category. And that's something we can build on for years to come."
Fair enough. "Whatever Your Mountain" provides a solid starting point. Still, this early in the campaign, it's a less-than-heady brew.
For one thing, the connection between hard-won physical achievement and making great beer doesn't go down as smoothly as it should. Yes, they're both laudable accomplishments—but in the spot, they don't quite mesh. Ultimately, the message boils down to pretty standard stuff for beer commercials: tossing back a cold one after a job well done (or in this case, a mud race well run).
Plus, the tagline, "Climb On," sounds a bit awkward, almost a throwback to bro-tastic beer tropes. Here, however, it's probably meant to be inclusive: Hey, everybody, guys and gals, climb on! Ride the bull … or beer bong … or whatever. (Not that any brand would ever dream of riding the BULL. Perish the thought!)
Ah well, it's rare to peak right at the outset when trying something new.