Bangalore-based independent digital solutions provider 22feet has been roped in as the digital partner for Dutch beer brand Heineken. Confirming the win to exchange4media, Vineet Gupta, Managing Partner, 22feet, said, “We are absolutely ecstatic. Heineken is a brand that we admire, appreciate, and consume. The kind of work that has been done by them in the digital space is exemplary. The fact that they chose us as their digital partner in India is a compliment and an absolute honour. We will handle the brand across the web and in the social media space.”
Weiden + Kennedy, Delhi is the creative agency for Heineken, while the media mandate rests with Mindshare, Bangalore. When contacted, Samar Singh Sheikhawat, Senior Vice-President (Marketing), United Breweries Ltd, said, “W+K initially also helped out on the digital front for Heineken. Recently, the digital business for Kingfisher, handled by Quasar Media, was awarded to 22feet. We also felt the need for a specialised digital agency to handle the Heineken brand. A pitch was called for and subsequently, 22feet was appointed the digital partner. All the brands of the UB Group will now be handled by 22feet.”
When the brand was launched in India, it was announced that digital media would play a significant role in promoting the brand in India. Gupta elaborated, “In the digital space, Heineken’s community building initiatives and interactions are fairly upscale and unique. We will come out with a mix of initiatives in own as well as earned media that will be in sync with the global template. The brand is very active in the digital space and already has a massive community across the globe. We look forward to rolling out content along with ongoing as well as special initiatives to build and engage their community in India.”
Digital will be integrated with all the marketing campaigns. An India-specific Facebook page has been created that will announce all the contests, promotions, etc., that the brand will come out with. Heineken has four main marketing activations platforms worldwide – the UEFA Champions League, the Rugby World Cup, associations with films such as the James Bond movies, and music. As sponsors, the brand will be coming up with contests, promotions, etc., in the digital sphere and on social media, as well as on-ground events. Sheikhawat added, “As far as India is concerned, the lead marketing platform will be music – with international concerts, DJ nights, lounge music events which will be aggressively marketed. We are planning to start off with some of these events from November-December. It is also learnt that some scenes of the latest Bond film will be shot in India. We have planned contests and promotions around this as well.”
Certain content will be created only for the digital and social media platforms. For instance, on Heineken’s Facebook page, there will be a global post from the Amsterdam office and two weekly posts from the India office. All the posts will revolve around the four main marketing activations platforms. “In fact, the launch of Heineken in India also took place through the digital medium. We posted pictures of the first Heineken bottle, videos of bottles being filled up and dispatched; it was almost like a countdown. You could also click on a link, which showed you the locations where Heineken is available,” Sheikhawat added. The brand has already been launched in Mumbai, Pune, Thane, Delhi, and Bangalore. This month, it will be out in Kolkata and Goa and next month in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and so on. By April next year, it will be available in the top 10-15 markets in the country.
Meanwhile, it may also be noted that 22feet recently bagged the digital duties of the Kingfisher East Bengal Football Club and Titan’s Swiss-made offering Xylys.