Thursday, 9 September 2010

Fake Guinness Viral Advertisement

Did you see the fake Guinness viral ad? The one with the naked lady doing goodness alone knows what underneath a bottle of Guinness? If you haven’t, it’s too late, because Diageo have made YouTube remove it from their site. I’m not surprised.

Although it was free advertising for Guinness, it wasn’t at all consistent with the Guinness brand values. Whilst 50% of the population (that’s not the female half) I'm sure thought it hilarious, its overtly sexy and sexist content seemed more suited to a Castlemain 4X Aussie commercial - with all its sophisticated humour. The Guinness advertising has always been wholesome, intelligent and stylish. Consistently wholesome, intelligent and stylish: which is why Guinness is a valuable brand that Diageo rightly want to protect.

Great marketing is a good deal more than a fun idea and a camcorder – although at times it doesn’t look that way. That’s the real beauty in something as complex as a world-beating brand – when you get to see the finished result it looks like a 16 year old could have done it.

But they didn’t.


  1. My daughter is the General Manager of the Dublin Fringe Festival [ ] which is sponsored by Absolut Vodka,part of International Distillers. The marketing for both the Festival and Absolut has been terrific and Guinness didn't like it. One of the things the Festival sponsored was an installation on the Liffey of coloured and illuminated model houses, a comment on the housing boom and crash. Last Thursday, when Guinness had a promotional day called 'Arthur's Day' they put a display of model brewing tanks on the Liffey one bridge down, without getting a full set of permissions. It was so obviously designed to detract from the Fringe's installation and the reasons are also obvious. They also managed to delay removing it so it stayed up for the whole of Thursday, despite being asked to remove it. Furthermore, the Fringe has had at least one highly coloured e-mail from someone at Guinness, ending up that it is no wonder Absolut was the sponsor.

    So I don't think Guinness is quite the angel that Caroline's comment might hint at.

  2. Talking of inappropriate advertising, I have just come back from Venice where St. Mark's Square has Bulgari and Guess plastered over buildings. Gross! Even the poor old Bridge of Sighs was surrounded!