Diageo Launches Grassroots Phase of Captain Morgan Effort

Diageo's Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum is launching a grassroots phase of its new campaign, "Got a Little Captain in You," which the company launched in June, and which replaced "The Captain was here."

The summer grassroots campaign asks consumers to pose in the rakish manner of the brand icon, based loosely on Captain Henry Morgan, benighted governor of Jamaica in the 17th century. The best poseur cadges a trip--not to Kingston, but to Vegas.

The campaign centers on nationwide "Ultimate Pose Off" competitions in bars, wherein competitors will vie against each other to be "Ultimate Captain Morgan Poser." Contestants, says Diageo, will be judged on originality, creativity, technical merit.

Three of the on-premise "Ultimate Pose Off" events taking place in Michigan, Minnesota and California will be filmed and later broadcast nationally on SpikeTV. An interactive component enables over-21 consumers to upload a photo of themselves to captainmorgan.com launched on July 4, and runs through the summer.



Brad Essig, director of the Captain Morgan brand, says grassroots marketing and national outreach reach are critical elements of the brand's success. "Captain Morgan wants to be where the consumers are," he says, "so we can be a part of those memorable times with friends--those real connection moments."

He says that while the effort is on par with past promotional programs from Captain Morgan, "Ultimate Pose-Off" is CM's first integrated marketing program including PR, TV advertising, on-premise, digital and in-store elements.

Three TV spots that launched this summer show the pose being performed by people in everyday situations, with the pose intended to evince the rakish nature of Captain Morgan drinkers. The effort, via Grey Worldwide, also includes online and outdoor ads.

The ads initially ran on USA, VH1, Fox Sports, E! and F/X. Print initially ran in Fhm, Maxim and Stuff and in-cinema. London-based Diageo also markets Smirnoff, Johnny Walker, Guinness, Baileys, J&B, Cuervo and Tanqueray brands in the U.S.

Per Essig, the competitive set is beyond spiced rums. "It is definitely more broadly defined. We target LDA [legal drinking age] 29-year-old consumers who are focused on fun and memorable experiences."

The company also has promotional events planned for the fourth quarter, notes Essig, and summer is a key time of year for the rums category.

"So running the Captain Morgan Ultimate Pose-Off through Labor Day really makes sense for us. Looking forward, we are planning to continue our promotional efforts throughout the remainder of the year surrounding high index occasions to keep Captain Morgan top of mind with our consumer."

Next story loading loading..