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Project: Thanks Alcohol
Client: Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission

When most 18–24 year olds drink, they binge drink. It’s a social norm. So when a night out doesn’t end well, they blame the alcohol instead of themselves. Of course, young adults don’t want to be lectured to. Nor do they want to hear about alcoholism or long-term effects on their health.

We created a campaign that—in a non-judgemental way—let our audience see and reflect on their own behaviour. “Thanks Alcohol!”, along with a sarcastic thumbs up, made for a humourous and memorable pairing to carry our message.

Ultimately, we helped our audience feel empowered to take control of their night and recognize that it can’t always be the alcohol’s fault.

This audience lives for the moment, so ads and web content focused on embarrassing short-term social consequences like puking, crying, fighting or waking up next to a stranger. Rather than photographs, illustrations helped young people see themselves and their peers these awkward situations. Radio played to our audience’s relatively short attention spans, with unique 7.5-second ads. On the web, a BuzzFeed-style quiz made the message sharable, helping it spread across social media.

Over the course of the highly targeted 4-week targeted campaign, received 16,600 visits, alongside thousands of social media interactions. Post-campaign, research indicated exceptionally high 79% aided awareness level.
The campaign received national and local creative recognition, including:

  • Radio Series Winner in Applied Arts’ Annual Advertising Awards
  • Radio Series Finalist at the Marketing Awards
  • Radio Campaign Merit from Advertising and Design Club of Canada
  • Radio Single and Series Distinction at the ACE Awards

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