Heineken 0.0’s First Ads Prove You Can Have Fun Without Alcohol

Publicis Milan brews up a zany campaign

Who’s up for a non-alcoholic barrel of fun?

Publicis Milan rolls out the self-consciously silly humor with zippy spots introducing Heineken 0.0, the brand’s first zero-alcohol beer, aimed mainly at markets in Europe plus Russia and Israel.

A 60-second TV manifesto that dropped a few weeks ago introduces the tagline “Open to all.” A cheeky voiceover begins, “Yes, we are open. Come in. Come as you are. Without trousers, if you like.”

So, feel free to drop your pants and check out the ad below. It features quirky, quick-cut takes on open-mindedness and inclusion, with men in drag, a cheesy magician, women boxing, a head-bangin’ music teacher, some urban cowboy type who rides his horse through the city at night, a self-assured goth gal, and a Martian who’s mastered the art of parallel parking:


“The target we are talking to are those who would like to have a zero-alcohol beer whenever they feel like it,” Marco Venturelli, agency executive creative director, tells Adweek. “We challenge those who say ‘Beer shouldn’t be drunk in the afternoon’ and give them a reason” to try Heineken 0.0.

Short online clips that broke last week place the brand at the center of different oddball scenarios. For example, why order a sparkly, fru-fru non-alcoholic cocktail when Heineken 0.0 is in the house?

“Took us forever to build the Fabio’s Temptation mocktail,” Venturelli recalls. “Creating—as Daniel Warwick, the director, put it—a ‘drinkable unicorn fart’ is not an easy job.”

Ah well, somebody’s gotta do it.

Next comes a workplace spoof, with an enterprising intern pounding down the Heineken 0.0 as she climbs the corporate ladder:

HR is gonna get complaints about that meeting for sure.

Meanwhile, a dude with romance on his mind has more than one reason on date night for wanting to keep a clear head:

Next time, hire a sitter.

Elsewhere, out in the garage, a DIY enthusiast really drills down into the brand proposition:

And here’s an especially unorthodox/obnoxious beer run:

“We didn’t consider other beers as competitors, but all the other drinks you reach for when you can’t or don’t feel like having alcohol,” says Venturelli. “So, we could take beer-world fun and apply it to any moment of the day and any person out there.”

Look, this stuff isn’t face-meltingly funny. Like the best non-alcoholic brews, the campaign employs a light touch designed to please without annihilating your powers of reason. Can the same be said for a “drinkable unicorn fart”? Alas, we’ll never know for sure.

A few more ads are on tap below:

Heineken 0.0 “Open To All” TV & Digital Campaign Credits

—TV Spot: “Ode to Openness”

Client: Heineken
Sr. Director Global Heineken® Brand: Gianluca Di Tondo
Head of Global Innovation Heineken® Brand Global Commerce: Ilaria Lodigiani
Innovation Manager Heineken® Global Marketing: Sarah Nisenbaum

Advertising Agency: Publicis Italy
Global Chief Creative Officer Publicis WW: Bruno Bertelli
Executive Creative Director: Cristiana Boccassini
Executive Creative Director: Luca Cinquepalmi
Executive Creative Director: Marco Venturelli
Art Director: Laura Aondio
Copywriter: Francesca Vitello
Strategic Planners: James Moore, Noa Dekel
Worldwide Account Director: David Pagnoni
Account Director: Francesca Baldrighi
Account Manager: Silvia Ghiretti
Head of TV Producer: Silvia Cattaneo

Director: Sebastian Strasser
Production Company: RadicalMedia London
Executive Producer: Ben Schneider
Producer: Leslie Vaughn
Director of Photography: Linus Sandgren
Production Designer: KK Barrett
Costume Designer: Nancy Steiner
Hair: Torsten Witte
Makeup: Albert Elizondo
1st Assistant Director: David Webb
Editor: Paul Hardcastle
Editorial: Trim London

Drums: Carla Azar
Music Supervision: Dirty Soup
Audio Post Production: Grand Central Recording Studios
Sound Design: Raja Sehgal

Voiceover Artist: Colin Salmon

VFX/Post: MPC London
VFX Producer: Phil Whalley
Colourist: Mark Gethin
VFX supervisor: Dan Sanders
CG Supervisor: Greg McKneally
2D Supervisor:Dirk Riesenfeld

—Short Films

Agency: Publicis Italy
Global Chief Creative Officer (Publicis Worldwide): Bruno Bertelli
Executive Creative Director: Cristiana Boccassini
Executive Creative Directors: Luca Cinquepalmi and Marco Venturelli
Heineken Global Digital Creative Directors: Milos Obradovic and Mihnea Gheorghiu
Associate Creative Directors:Aureliano Fontana
Art Director: Laura Aondio, Andrea Raia
Copywriter: Francesca Vitello, Matteo Gatto
Worldwide Account Director :David Pagnoni
Digital Client Service Director: Cecilia Cavagnini
Account Manager: Silvia Ghiretti
Planning Director: Sol Ghafoor
Strategic Planners: James Moore
Head of TV Production: Silvia Cattaneo
Producer: Silvia Cattaneo

Production Company: Reset
Director: Daniel Warwick
Editor: Stuart Greenwald
Producer: Adam Saward
Post-Production Company: Smoke&Mirrors
Audio Post-Production Company: Smoke&Mirrors

Media Buying: Starcom

City / Country: Spain, Netherlands, UK, Russia, Romania, Austria, Hungary, Germany, France

Exposure: Mixed Media (Facebook, YouTube, TV)

@DaveGian davegia@hotmail.com David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.