Virtual Front Row Seat
Molson Canadian is an iconic beer brand that has been a part of the hockey fabric in Canada for decades. However, with recent competitive clutter and a declining category, this affiliation and perception have seen significant erosion. Past campaigns focused on creating iconic grand gestures (a hockey rink on top of a mountain/skyscraper), but something was missing, and these seemed inaccessible and limiting.
Hockey fans love sport 24/7, but with the price of tickets and demand, not everyone can attend a game, let alone in the front row. So Molson Canadian wanted to bring that experience to them, in their homes, or even on the go. Utilizing VR, along with NHL coverage and content, it found the perfect approach to putting consumers in the game: creating a gesture for the masses, not the select few and one that could directly drive beer case sales.
VR is emerging but costly, and the point was to provide a lightweight and accessible experience for its audience. So the brand leveraged cardboard VR viewers and pin codes inserted within Molson Canadian beer packaging nationwide. When connected to their always-at-hand mobile phones, this provided that visceral NHL experience they craved instead of the traditional disposable beer promotional items like t-shirts and koozies.
Working with the NHL and Sportsnet, it identified six key games that featured all seven Canadian NHL teams. The brand brought fans to the forefront by unlocking front row access through the first ever live-stream multi-camera VR experience, featuring exclusive content and camera feed selection. During the campaign, additional 360° VR VOD content was shared in real time across social channels and the Sportsnet app, extending the overall reach and experience.
As part of a promotion leading up to the first ever VR NHL broadcasts in Canada, we leveraged Rogers’ talent, airtime, and digital channels to build excitement and direct fans to retail. Integrations featuring hosts using the viewers took place during Hockey Night in Canada’s pre-game shows, and throughout the campaign. PR coverage was exceptional & well beyond our core channels, as media noticed this exciting opportunity delivering true value for fans and enthusiasts alike.
Molson Canadian delivered 114,838 VR front row experiences, surpassing goals by 40%, with an average usage of five minutes. VR-VOD content saw 3,908,328 total views over the produced 46 videos, with expanding content plans as we saw increasing demand. A brand lift study showed 80% lift in ad recall and 10% lift in purchase intent amongst our target, significantly above CPG averages.
Brand: Molson Canadian
Strategy Manager - Nykolai Hrytsyk
Strategy Assistant - Tim Correia
Managing Partner - Claus Burmeister
Marketing Manager - Duncan Fraser
Director of Marketing - Chris Blackburn
Assistant Marketing Manager - Amanda Braun
Manager, Sponsorship Development - James Johnston
Account Manager Integrated Sales - Craig Scott