Relaunching a category and brand in high spirits


The challenge

Genever, sometimes known as Dutch gin, is a spirit which was popular in America in the 19th century, but had since been forgotten. Our client, Spirits NL, a European consortium of five, premium Genever brands, asked the Because team to relaunch this category and a collection of European brands across America, and do so in a way that resonates with the modern drinkers of today. The campaign needed to reignite interest in a category and a stable of European brands to help forge new market opportunities and relationships in a vast, traditional brand-entrenched country.



The team decided the best way to build awareness and drive interest in this category was to celebrate the rich history of the spirit in America, and to fill minds and glasses with the stories of the import pioneers. This formed the creative underpinning of a country-wide plan that targeted seven states, and whilst it paid tribute to the past, the Because team used creative experiences and modern technology like Virtual Reality (VR) to add a fresh, innovative spin to help rebrand this classic drink and category as the tipple of choice for the tastemakers and influencers of America today.



The team created a whole new visual identity for a collection of European Genever brands, and crafted a strategic marketing approach comprising of a handful of key workstreams such as experiential, social and PR. A powerful Prohibition-flavoured live experience was created across several events for thousands of key partners, customers and consumers alike.


In a typical event, the guests boarded the ‘Genever Express’, arriving at the European saloons and secret speakeasies from the prohibition area in America. Expert mixologists and bartenders served Genever inspired cocktails, putting a modern spin on vintage bar-based tips and tricks. The brand experience immersed attendees in a world where Genever was the cocktail of choice. The modern tools of VR and digital content helped to educate the consumers on what flavour notes, botanical additions and ingredients make up Genever, and helped to reveal the subtle differences between the collection of European brands. These events were amplified with a powerful social media and PR campaign, Category Ambassadors and KOLs. VIP study tours helped train bar staff and advocates to reinvigorate the popularity of Genever, and source new commercial opportunities.



Relaunching a drinks category across America, and introducing specific European brands, wouldn’t be possible with a traditional PR approach and marketing campaign – it needed a creative reimagining that revitalised the American love for this Dutch spirit, and for the spirit of the times. The focus was twofold: an integrated B2B and B2C campaign that led to a successful reintroduction of the category in the US, both commercially and strategically.  


Gaining traction and awareness in an established market is challenging, even in the best economic climate. Our secret marketing cocktail is a mix of results-driven tactics with creative experience; contact us now so we can use it to toast to your success.

P.S View the 360 VR experience on YouTube here.

Because are experience makers, brand activators and content creators.
For almost 30 years, our pioneering campaigns have connected people with brands in extraordinary ways, changing beliefs and actions.