Carlsberg has recently relaunched their award winning, “If Carlsberg did” strapline with a new TV campaign. The latest ad, “If Carlsberg did… supermarkets” was produced by 72andSunny Amsterdam and features a group of guys wandering around a dream supermarket filled with all of their favourite macho stuff.


It was followed up with an innovative billboard earlier this month that dispensed free beer under the headline, “Probably the best poster in the world”. The poster was created by Fold7 and Mission Media and went down extremely well with the London public.


With two great successes so far already, it’s hard to remember why Carlsberg chose to drop the popular campaign four years ago. At the time, Carlsberg explained that they were attempting to expand their global market and believed that “probably” was too subtle a term for the Asian audience. So, the decision was made to relaunch with the literal call to action, “That calls for a Carlsberg”.


The new position received mixed reviews initially, with some clever wordsmiths commenting that it, “probably wasn’t the best rebrand in the world”. And after four years, it seems the critics were proven right. Looking back, no other campaign idea really stood a chance – “Probably the best beer in the world” was conceived by Saatchi & Saatchi back in 1973 and ran successfully until 2011.


Going back to the tried and trusted line makes complete sense. What I don’t understand is why Carlsberg decided not to return to Saatchi & Saatchi, the originators of the campaign? There could be a number of reasons for this, but it does bring up another interesting question, if agencies are judged on their creative output and awards, shouldn’t Saatchi & Saatchi be credited in future for the “If Carlsberg did…” campaign, even if just within the confines of industry awards?


The MD of 72andSunny Amsterdam, Nic Owen commented, “We’re super excited about making the most of [‘If Carlsberg did…’] in a day and age it’s perfectly suited for.” Well, of course they’re bloody well “super excited” they’ve just been handed years and years of creative awards on a plate, or in this case a frosty glass.


At least in this instance, Saatchi & Saatchi had the campaign for almost 40 years so there is little chance their hard work will be forgotten. But what about the smaller agencies? The ones that are tossed aside, not because of their expensive price tag but because their hard work has meant the brand may now be too big for them to adequately handle. Shouldn’t a company like that continue to be credited? Probably. But then again Carlberg don’t do award shows…

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