Summer Party Fail? High Noon 'Lifestyle Guards' Race to the Rescue

The new campaign, from longtime agency Preacher, drops as the ready-to-drink category continues to heat up

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The tanned and shredded “lifestyle guards” in High Noon’s new ads will reinflate your float, restock your cooler and retrieve your errant football. Hammock fail? The guys are on it. Grilling mishap? They appear instantly with extra provisions.

The new campaign, from longtime agency of record Preacher, keeps the sun-soaked vibe of earlier marketing for the canned cocktail brand but adds a more dynamic element with its buff problem solvers.

Previous ads, which have helped build the young brand into a top seller in the ready-to-drink category, leaned into a laid-back personality with proverb-style taglines such as “may you tan evenly on both sides,” “may you know somebody who knows somebody with a pool,” and “may you live like you’re retired, even if you’re 26 and employed.”

The new work, launching today, keeps the ongoing “Sun’s Up” banner while developing characters who will likely recur in future ads. The creative takes its cues from classic Baywatch, cheesy sitcoms and other pop culture touchstones.

“We’ve shown people the ‘Sun’s Up’ lifestyle by way of observing it—pointing out the funny truths that make for a great day in the sun with friends,” according to Justin Ralph, Preacher’s creative director. “As the brand has grown, it’s started to feel like someone should champion that lifestyle, protect it and ensure everyone gets to enjoy it.”

Cocktail in a can

The ads debut as the RTD category continues to explode, with recent entries like Absolut Cocktails—which has an Ocean Spray collaboration for a vodka cranberry drink in its line—and Captain Morgan Sliced, to name just a few. Jack Daniels launched its throwback (yet still popular) Jack and Coke as a pre-mixed tipple in original and zero sugar formulations.

The market for such adult beverages in the U.S. was estimated at $229 million in 2023, with sales expected to jump 15% annually over the next six years, according to Grand View Research. Demand is coming largely from young consumers looking for a convenient, lower-ABV drink.

Companies in the space have focused on innovation in their offerings, per the research firm, stepping up the quality of their ingredients, cutting calories and sugar, and adding flourishes like ginger and lavender. Major players include spirits behemoths Diageo, Brown-Forman, Pernod Ricard and Bacardi Limited.

High Noon, a vodka cocktail that skirts the seltzer subcategory, has flourished in a jam-packed space since its 2019 premiere. The brand, owned by E. & J. Gallo Winery, grew 30.5% in 2023, according to Impact Databank.

“Lifestyle Guards” will run on broadcast TV, streaming services, online video and paid social, among other media buys. Through the year, the brand plans to drop a Snapchat lens, YouTube shorts and local media extensions.

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