beverages

Liquid Death Uses Witchcraft To Kill Thirst -- And Plastic Bottles


If your brand is called Liquid Death, why not hire a real-life Louisiana witch doctor to put a curse on your entire beverage inventory leading up to Halloween?

That’s exactly what the Austrian spring water startup is doing with a campaign titled “Certified Cursed Liquid Death.”

In the campaign video, “practicing witch” Mystic Dylan is seen in a smoky warehouse preparing to cast an evil spell on cases of Liquid Death. “I call on the waters of Liquid Death and curse it with a witch’s breath,” he intones. “Curse this place, invade this product, invade those who would consume.”

Disclaimers at the end of the video warn that “Liquid Death is not responsible for what the demons do to you if you decide to consume it.”

The video is running on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

According to company co-founder and CEO Mike Cessario, if you’re going up against the beverage Goliaths of the real world, weirdness helps. “As crazy as the name is, it just also made so much sense for what the product mission is: to kill your thirst and help bring death to plastic bottles,” Cessario tells Marketing Daily.

He believes there’s a “false assumption” the wellness demographic isn’t interested in weird, tongue-in-cheek entertainment.

“The industry normally uses ‘aspirational’ fitness models and airbrushed celebrities,” Cessario says. “We’ve made a conscious decision to use our brand to support weirdoes and entertainment that generally get ignored by traditional wellness brands.”

A self-described “entrepreneurial creative,” Cessario’s background includes such agencies as Crispin, Porter & Bogusky (Alex Bogusky is an official Liquid Death advisor), Humanaut, VaynerMedia (Gary Vaynerchuk is a Liquid Death investor) and DonerLA. 

Liquid Death worked with the creative agency Party Land.

Before the launch of Liquid Death last January, the company tested the brand concept on social media as a low-cost way to gauge consumer interest. “Our video went viral and we realized there was a market for it,” Cessario says.

The 100% natural, non-carbonated spring water from a private, underground source in Frankenmarkt, Austria is available direct-to-consumer via the company’s website and on Amazon.com. Retail distribution currently consists of a few hundred convenience stores, bars, coffee shops and retail stores, according to Cessario.

On the environmental front, beyond using aluminum cans that can be recycled multiple times, Liquid Death works with the Thirst Project and 5 Gyres while donating five cents from every can sold to help remove plastic garbage from oceans and provide drinking water to the needy. 

“Our mission is to make health and sustainability more fun and not take itself too seriously,” says Cessario. “Why should unhealthy brands like energy drinks, soda and beer get to have all the fun?"

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