For more than 150 years, Bacardi has used innovative marketing strategies to not only promote its products, but to connect with consumers. In April 2015, the company revamped its promotional strategy, moving its global creative responsibilities to BBDO Worldwide and its media efforts to OMD Worldwide (both are agencies of Omnicom Group). In June, the brand announced plans to establish Centers of Excellence to spearhead regional marketing in Europe and North America. As summer gave way to fall, Bacardi unveiled the inaugural result of its recent marketing redevelopments: a new multi-channel marketing campaign reflecting an exciting, modern approach to brand development. The campaign builds upon the brand’s earlier tagline “Untameable Since 1862,” honoring Bacardi’s heritage and history while inviting consumers to help shape the future of the brand.
Nothing in the Way
Bacardi launched their newest ad campaign in October 2015 with 50-second TV spot “The Truck.” Harnessing the energy and creativity of the millennial generation, the ad conveys the spirit of Bacardi’s new campaign—and of the next generation of consumers. It features a group of friends hosting a truly one-of-a-kind house party in a home mounted on a flatbed truck. The revelers invite new friends to come along as they travel the country, and the spot’s hand-held cinematography brings viewers right into the festivities as the partygoers engage in various antics and dance the night away. Reminiscent of a movie trailer, the ad ends with the tagline “There’s nothing in the way,” beckoning viewers to join the adventure as the mobile house party continues down the interstate.
The new ad campaign ties in to a variety of new online and mobile content, including engaging ads created with Facebook’s Immersive Canvas, but its most remarkable marketing effort was its real-world house parties. Held at a repurposed mansion sitting atop a flatbed truck, the BACARDÍ Untameable House Party traveled down the East Coast to give three cities a taste of the BACARDÍ experience.
The First Stop – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Bacardi held its first house party over one of America’s favorite festive weekends: Halloween! The company kicked off a month of mobile house parties in Philadelphia along Penn’s Landing in Center City, inviting guests to celebrate inside its custom-built, five-room mansion. The house included a bathroom bar, a makeup station, a “dad’s study,” a massive dance stage, and a backyard stocked with plenty of party games.
The evening kicked off with “Fueling the Hustle,” a roundtable discussion hosted by MTV personality Nessa Nitty and featuring several of the evening’s musical acts, as well as creative minds such as photographer Conrad Benner and Chef Roblé Ali. During the VIP cocktail roundtable, the group discussed their own personal backgrounds and artistic journeys while offering advice to aspiring artists.
Later, the party kicked off with NYC-based artist MeLo-X, who played a number of dance-worthy rap and electronic tracks in his own unique genre, dubbed “electric soul.” Other performers included hip-hop duo R. City, who performed their hit single “Locked Away,” as well as hits that they had a hand in making for performers such as Akon and Rihanna. Bacardi also treated guests to a surprise performance by Chromeo, the creators of electro-funk hits “Jealous” and “Bonafied Lovin’,” who delighted partygoers with several of Philly’s favorite classic rap songs.
Next, Bacardi’s mansion on wheels rolled down south to Georgia, where it set up near the Atlantic Station shopping and dining district. DJ Ace kept the party going throughout the evening, as did opening act and Atlanta native Cap1. Throngs of VIP attendees sipped BACARDÍ cocktails out of bat-emblazoned red cups and experienced the brand’s untameable energy firsthand through surprise entertainment that included break dancers and a guitar solo battle. They also mingled with celebrity guests DJ Be Barnes, celebrity stylist Tameka Raymond, and photographer Brick Stowell before turning their attention to the evening’s headline act: Meek Mill. The rapper, whose debut album reached number two on the Billboard 200, fueled the party with fan favorites such as “Amen,” “Ima Boss,” and “Young & Getting’ It.” More than 250 people partied the night away with Meek Mill before the Untameable House Party traveled further down the East Coast to its final stop—one of the top creative festivals in the world.
Art Basel – Miami, Florida
The BACARDÍ Untameable House Party went out with a bang in Miami, Florida, concluding with a three-day celebration of creativity. From December 3–5, the Untameable tour took up residence at Art Basel Miami Beach, one of three international art fairs hosted by Art Basel. Since 1970, the organization has strived to bring together the international art community with its curatorial approach to modern and contemporary art, and holds two additional art shows each year in Basel, Switzerland, and Hong Kong.
To bring their party to one of the largest art events in the nation, Bacardi partnered with hip-hop recording artist Swizz Beatz, a veteran of the Art Basel scene. Swizz Beatz’ involvement in Art Basel included his curated exhibition “The Dean Collection,” which, in conjunction with Bacardi, hosted the No Commission Art Fair, which offered free exhibition space to local artists. Each day, these artists could display their pieces within the temporary complex known as Casa Bacardi and take home 100 percent of the profits of their work.
The No Commission Art Fair ran daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., but by night, Casa Bacardi transformed into the Untameable House Party. This three-day celebration featured both world-renowned and upcoming artists, and began on Thursday with performances by Young Guru, Nana Kwabena, Hannah Bronfman, and Alicia Keys. On Friday night, the party continued with sets by A-TRAK, DJ Esco, and Pusha T, and culminated on Saturday with Wiz Khalifa, AraabMuzik, and DJ Runna, who prepped the crowd for the BACARDÍ Untameable House Party grand finale courtesy of Swizz Beatz and DMX.