Jenny Chan 陳詠欣
Dec 19, 2014

A velvet barber chair, a half-done haircut and a deranged Shanghai adventure

SHANGHAI - Heineken's year-end marketing drive seeks to distill its global positioning around adventure into something more raving for Chinese men.

Client: Heineken

Agency: W+K Shanghai

Market: China

Scope: TVC (above), on-street activation during October, social media, online video

Details: In the China version of Heineken's global TV campaign titled 'Cities Of The World', the main protagonist unwittingly embarked on a mini city adventure after he is forced to trace the other barber who will finish his haircut. This happened after the first barber, who lured him to a green velvet chair in a Shanghai lane, deliberately did a half-baked job.

Offline, to set this campaign in motion, the brand placed multiple "invitations" all over Shanghai, from a duvet to a vinyl player strapped to a bicycle, all pointing to a mysterious address. 200 consumers, curious enough to check out the address, arrived at a house with a Heineken green door. Once they sat on the chair found in the house, they were sent on a virtual tour of a tulip field, a carnival and the insides of a yellow New York City cab. The score for the ad is composed by the notable Tokyo breakbeat musical duo, HIFANA.

And in the ad, as the chair returned to normalcy, Heineken used 3D imaging and printing technology to create 1:1-scale statues of the participants, who reappeared at an undisclosed location three weeks later.

Campaign's comments: Everyone likes to go on a hunt, and this is very interesting indeed. We can imagine the amount of money spent, but some folks can't see the message behind the money. Chinese netizens are complaining there is little "Chineseness" in this ad and that, perhaps, it was made to fulfil the "I am such a creative master" ambitions of ECDs.


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