Campaign of the Week

Contagious I/O

18 February 2020

Brewer battles binge drinking with bottle cap brand giveaways 

Colombian brewer puts other brands on its bottle caps to promote responsible drinking

Aguila, Colombia’s number one beer brand, wanted to encourage people to drink more responsibly.

To do this, with the help of MullenLowe SSP3 in Colombia, the AB InBev-owned brand decided to remove its logo from the top of its beer caps and invited other food, water and transport brands like KFC, Papa John’s and Uber to put their logos on instead.

For the Beer Cap Project, every bottle cap functioned as a voucher that could be used to get free food, water or a ride home.

For example, if the top of the bottle cap featured the Papa John’s logo, by looking on the underside of the cap, the drinker would find out that they could exchange it for pepperoni rolls and that the promotion is available on Friday and Saturday nights between 10pm and 1:30am until 9 February, according to the dedicated webpage.

The limited-edition beers are available to purchase from any supermarket or bar that stocks Aguila.

Aguila have also erected 29 billboards in Japan, the Netherlands, Ireland, the US and the Czech Republic, which challenge other alcohol brands such as Heineken, Miller, Guinness and Asahi to yield their caps to non-alcoholic companies and help consumers drink responsibly.

‘AB InBev are committed to leading new initiatives that aim to highlight the responsible consumption of alcohol that truly bring about real societal change,’ said Thor Borresen, marketing VP for AB InBev Colombia, in the press release. ‘For the “Beer Cap Project”, we wanted to take advantage of Aguila’s strength in Colombia to reach leading beer brands around the world and promote a universal message to educate people to consume alcohol responsibly.’

Contagious Insight 

Look at me / While the main point of this campaign is to promote responsible drinking, by visually differentiating itself from its competitors Aguila is more likely to catch people’s attention and drive sales at the point of purchase. In Les Binet and Sarah Carter’s book How Not to Plan: 66 Ways to Screw Up, the Adam&eve DDB duo stress that most people don’t devote much brainpower to what they buy but that people are led by feelings, hunches and intuitions. Their advice: ‘Create brands that stand out, even when people aren’t interested in them. Create an emotional “halo” to influence people who don’t care about our products. And then provide rational arguments to convince the few people who do care. At the right time – and when they are interested […] Adding interest to things that people don’t care about is one of the most important functions of advertising.’

By grabbing people’s attention and then giving people a reason to purchase the product (i.e. they get something free in return), Aguila is able to influence people’s buying behaviour to drive the purchase of its own product.

A nudge in the right direction / One of AB InBev’s Global Smart Drinking Goals is to reduce the harmful use of alcohol by at least 10% by the end of 2020. However, simply telling your customers to be responsible when drinking is hard. 

According to behaviour scientist David Halpern, in his book Inside the Nudge Unit: How small changes can make a big difference, if you want to encourage a behavioural change without mandating or instructing it, you can do it by ‘mak[ing] it easy, attractive, harness[ing] social influence and choos[ing] a time when most receptive’. In this case, Aguila is able to ‘nudge’ people towards drinking more responsibly by offering people free products in a simple, fun way, at a time when they are more likely to listen to the message - all the while maintaining a supportive, rather than condescending tone towards is target market.

This was first published on Contagious I/O, our online intelligence tool. To find out more click here.

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