Last year, Rums of Puerto Rico launched its first multi-brand effort promoting labels like Bacardi, Ron Llave, and Don Q in major markets. The territory's umbrella marketing and economic development organization then launched a tourism campaign, "Just Think Puerto Rico."
Now comes a new effort that puts it all together -- touting both Puerto Rican rums, constituting about 70% of the rums consumed in the U.S. and Puerto Rico itself.
The new effort, which extols consumers to "Just Think, Puerto Rican Rum," focuses on tradition and some of the mandates for producing the cane-based spirit that aren't the law in other rum-producing regions. It is also timed with a deal Bacardi recently signed with Puerto Rico's economic development organization that keeps Bacardi production in Puerto Rico for at least another 20 years.
The effort, which also touts Ron del Barrilito and Palo Viejo rums, includes print, digital and out-of-home messaging in New York, Washington, D.C., and Miami.
"This year the focus is on key target markets, so we have a really nice mix in terms of media," says Nicole J. Rodriguez, director of Rums of Puerto Rico. "Seventy-eight percent of budget is towards out-of-home in places like subway stations, newsstands, and taxicabs. In Miami, we have billboards, and signage in airport terminals." She says the balance of the buy is print that reaches both men and women and local newspapers. "We also have digital including a new Web site, and an iPod app that is coming out soon."
The campaign will also include a series of events and partnerships throughout the year, including a launch event on Wednesday at the Empire State Building featuring Food Network chef Claire Robinson and rum ambassadors from Puerto Rico. The program also includes an extension of contracts for the Rums of Puerto Rico lounges at Madison Square Garden and Citi Field, home of the Mets.
Rodriguez tells Marketing Daily that the unifying logo on all efforts will be "Puerto Rico Does It Better."
"Last year was more focused on rums. This year we are uniting promotional efforts from all the agencies, including tourism and the Puerto Rico Film Commission," says Rodriguez. "We want to focus on a single theme that portrays Puerto Rico as a quality destination." She says the campaign applies a pallet of creative executions that highlight both rum brands from Puerto Rico and the territory's beaches, mountains, and iconic historical quarters. "The agency did a wonderful job promoting the destination without taking away the core message about the brands."
Rodriguez says the effort runs through June 30, "Then a new budget comes in and we will need to go through flowchart again. But it's a longevity campaign, so it's not just something we do for year and change."
While the major media commitments are in the three urban markets, the campaign extends to other states with grassroots efforts. "We are really keeping an eye on those states where rum consumption is going up, such as California." The Rums of Puerto Rico will, for instance, sponsor this year's Hollywood Dominoes tournament during Oscar Week.