Heineken Launches a Less Bitter Campaign for Irish Stout Island’s Edge

By Kyle O'Brien 

Irish people love a good stout, but they don’t always love the bitter taste of it. Last year, Heineken Ireland decided to create a stout that is simply less bitter, calling it Island’s Edge, and the brand has now launched a campaign that’s also less bitter.

Publicis Dublin released “It’s better, less bitter” with a cast of folks in a pub who are decidedly not upset, despite having some not-so-great things happen to them. The campaign salutes those who share the belief that life, much like stout, is better if it’s less bitter.

The first humorous TV spot, directed by David Shane and produced by O Positive Films, is set in a cozy Irish pub and shows how one customer overhearing that Island’s Edge is “just less bitter” quickly turns into patrons from every corner of the pub stepping forward with stories of their lack of bitterness, including a guy who’s ex is marrying a successful pilot and a woman who has received an unfortunately misspelled tattoo.


The campaign also includes OOH, radio and social.

“Competing in Ireland against one of the world’s biggest brands, the first thing we needed to do was be authentic but do it with a bit of personality. With a key product differentiator of ‘less bitterness’ it gave us a brilliant jumping off point. We loved the idea of people trying to move on or hide their bitterness,” said Ger Roe, board creative director at Publicis Dublin in a statement.

“There’s nothing more interesting to me than people trying not to reveal what they’re really thinking,” said director Shane in a statement. “There were so many slights and resentments under the surface of this smart hilarious script. It has everything I’m always looking for in an ad and rarely see.”