Harbin Beer’s experiential stunt forges international connections


We love to share examples of brands that have tapped into their softer side with kind-hearted activations. Samsung’s powerful Hearing Hands stunt and Coca-Cola’s magical #WishUponACoke campaign are just two of our favourites, both providing altruistic brand experiences.


Now Chinese beer brand Harbin has created a heart-warming campaign which looks to connect communities through the power of sport.

With 14 neighbouring countries, China shares a border with more countries that any other in the world. But with each having their own distinct language, culture and lifestyles, people living on different sides of the borders rarely communicate with one another.


Harbin Beer set out to change that by bringing people from across the borders together in the spirit of friendly competition. The brand staged a series of sporting games at China’s border with five of its neighbouring countries: Mongolia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Russia and Kazakhstan.

Harbin brand ambassadors surprised people at rural villages along the border lines with sporting equipment for basketball, paddle boarding, table tennis, football and cycling. But instead of keeping the games within the village, the brand encouraged residents from the bordering countries to cross over and play together.


After the initial games, Harbin Beer generously left the sports equipment behind in the various locations, so that people from both sides of the divide could continue to play and bond.

The whole stunt was captured in a moving documentary-style film. See it for yourself:

The global marketing opportunities afforded by live sports is immense. Download our free eBook now to discover the 10 most effective experiential sports activations and what brands can learn from them.


Author bio


With nearly 30 years of marketing experience, both client and agency side, I’ve acquired a rare perspective on brands and business: I believe you have to challenge things creatively if you want to grow sales. Consumer technology is reshaping our world, and it’s only the great brands that stay on the crest.