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January 21, 2009

Does Heineken's New "Give Yourself a Good Name" Campaign Help its Naming and Branding?

heineken1.gifHeineken's new "Give Yourself a Good Name" campaign might be the first slogan I have seen that would not be too bad for a naming company. That said, I'm not sure if it's a great one for a beer company.

The chief marketing officer for Heineken in the USA explains:

Our consumers strive to give themselves a good name in a variety of ways including the opportunities they pursue, their responses to every day situations and through the brands they choose. Heineken is a brand with a 'good name' reinforced by 146 years of brewing excellence and a family-driven mentality to be the best. With our new campaign, we're taking steps to ensure that we continue to remain relevant and connected to our consumers.

There appears to be a double meaning at work here. It clearly communicates that consumers should reach for a brand with a good name, but it seems that by drinking Heineken they will also be building a good reputation for themselves. In addition, there's an admonition to drink responsibly, or not to throw your name away in drunken excess.

The campaign features three cryptic 30 second spots with actor John Turturro, one of which will be shown during the Super Bowl.

This comes as Heineken tries to push both its lager and light brands, both of which are facing declining sales in a tough economy.

As Craig McNarma points out, the campaign is a bit interesting but doesn't really explain to us why beer drinkers should pay more for Heineken. Turturro is funny but he essentially spouts nonsense at the viewer ("he who wanders with purpose has no purpose to wander") in a high-end setting, which does little to create any real incentive for the consumer.

My main concern here is that I just don't see a connection between drinking Heineken and giving somebody a good name, or even understand how Heineken itself has a good name.

Is drinking beer all about preserving one's good name?

Does this campaign further Heineken's good name in the mind of the consumer?

Having Turtorro say to us in a somewhat threatening voice to "Navigate wisely...or get lost" makes me feel like ditching the beer, and its name, altogether.

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Posted by William Lozito at January 21, 2009 8:15 AM
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1 Comment

Actually, he says "Navigate wisely. DON'T get lost." But I agree, it lacks a clear call to action. But, frankly, that's what wrong with most advertising these days. If you don't tell people definitively what you want them to do then they'll definitely do nothing.

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