Angry Orchard's 'Angry Swap' Shames Bad Gifts

At one point or another, we’ve all walked away from a gift swap with an item that absolutely no one wants.

Recognizing this universal truth, hard cider brand Angry Orchard is centering its holiday campaign around shaming such awful gifts with its “Angry Swap,” while promoting the release of the new Crisp Imperial Hard Cider, a stronger, 8% ABV version of the product.

“To be clear, we don't want your crappy gifts either,” the brand wrote in a statement. Instead, the Boston Beer Co.-owned brand is calling on drinkers to submit images of their worst gift swap gifts before Dec. 20 for a chance to win $50 and a year’s supply of the new Crisp Imperial offering. The tagline summarizing the campaign? “Don’t Get Mad. Get Angry.”

It’s a way into the crowded holiday alcohol marketing landscape that stands out for deviating from positivity and nostalgia -- with a hint of scorn befitting the “angry” branding, while addressing a consumer reality.



The campaign was driven by insights from a recent brand survey conducted by The Harris Poll which found that 61% of people who participated in gift swaps were disappointed with the gifts they left with -- and 41% would “love to” walk away from such a gift exchange with alcohol.

The campaign follows the release of Angry Orchard Crisp Imperial Cider last month, with the brand noting at the time of launch that ciders with a higher ABV are the category’s fastest-growing segment. Crisp Imperial is also featured as part of the brand’s seasonal Knotty Bunch variety pack, alongside its 4.3% ABV Crisp Light; and seasonal Cranberry Pomegranate and Ginger varieties.

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