Ad Nut
Nov 28, 2022

Crafty beer campaign in Vietnam swaps cheap brews for premium

Vietnamese Belgian-style brewers Belgo figured out how to get people to take a chance on their more expensive, premium product.

Crafty beer campaign in Vietnam swaps cheap brews for premium

Who likes acorns? This squirrel!  They taste pretty good, are moderately nutritious and filling, but most importantly are cheap, plentiful and can be easily stocked. One could compare Ad Nut's acorn consumption to the way humans stock up on 24 packs of their standard brew and fill up whenever the urge strikes.

But oooh, what Ad Nut wouldn't do to trade in a few of those acorns for some tasty, tasty cashews (of all snacks they're the best). Alas, no one seems willing to make that trade and it's not like some magical machine exists that could provide the upgrade.

So you can image Ad Nut's admiration for a crafty new campaign from Happiness Saigon on behalf of Belgo, a local Vietnamese-based Belgian brewery, that does exactly that. Confident that their premium craft beers are superior to cheaper suds mass-produced by the multinational brewing giants, the campaign has created a buzz by building a vending machine where one can swap a cheap can of beer for a 'premium' bottle of Belgo.

While AdNut has seen campaigns involving cider and beer machines of various kinds (including this award-winner that turns beer bottles into sand), this campaign works because it solves the exact issue that the client here needs solving. Belgo just needs more people to try its beers despite the price difference. So it could either slap a big discount on its beer and cheapen its brand, or pull a stunt like this that shows beer drinkers physically rejecting cheap beer to accept their premium Belgian beer. The visuals work really well here in Belgo's favour. 

“With a product like Belgo accessibility is a challenge. No one wants to take a chance on a beer that’s eight times the price of what they already know they enjoy," said Nick Stillittano, Happiness Saigon's creative and production director behind the campaign. "But, turning the accessibility of those mass market brands to our advantage, we think there’s something fun, provocative, and maybe a little head-turning in there.”

While the number of beers tried from a single vending machine isn't likely to make much difference, the deal is also available at all Belgo pubs in Vietnam, where anyone exchange a can of any beer at the counter for a fresh pulled craft Belgian beer, essentially turning beer into currency. 

Ad Nut is awaiting news of what happens to the cheap cans that Belgo collects as payment. 

In the meantime, it's time for someone to get to work on a machine that turns acorns to cashews to further elevate that premium cold brew experience. 
Ad Nut is a surprisingly literate woodland creature that for unknown reasons has an unhealthy obsession with advertising. Ad Nut gathers ads from all over Asia and the world for your viewing pleasure, because Ad Nut loves you. You can also check out Ad Nut's Advertising Hall of Fame, or read about Ad Nut's strange obsession with 'murderous beasts'.


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