For the launch of its new premium whisky, the Odyssey, Diageo literally went the extra mile by commissioning a luxury yacht – dubbed the Voyager – to travel across Asia Pacific to reproduce the epic journey that made John Walker & Sons a pioneer in international trading. On board the yacht was Tom Jones, the John Walker & Sons global brand ambassador, along with extensive exhibits, including a giant touch-screen table showcasing the story behind the company’s brand new “triple malt” whisky.
The Voyager began its journey in Shanghai and reached Hong Kong for a 4-day stay in October 2012. Weber Shandwick’s team in Hong Kong was tasked with helping strengthen the positioning of Johnnie Walker as a premium whisky brand in the Hong Kong market. The agency’s approach entailed engaging the city’s most influential whisky connoisseurs, lifestyle icons and media representatives and inviting them on board the yacht for exclusive tasting sessions and immersing them in the history of John Walker & Sons.
In addition to securing a media tie-in opportunity for Diageo, the team in Hong Kong hosted a media luncheon, three cocktail parties and a trade dinner, altogether playing host to well over 1,000 guests. The media outreach campaign garnered over 40 pieces of in-depth coverage in key luxury lifestyle glossies such as Esquire, Hong Kong Tatler, and The Peak, including ten one-on-one interviews with the global brand ambassador. John Walker & Sons’ status as an aspirational brand was further bolstered through enthusiastic exposure in major Chinese and English mass media, including dailies such as Hong Kong Economic Times, South China Morning Post, as well as free-to-air and subscription TV channels like TVB Pearl and NOW TV, reaching millions of Hongkongers.
The campaign proved so successful that Diageo entrusted the February 2013 launch of Odyssey and a related public exhibition in Macau with Weber Shandwick in Hong Kong. Interested in learning more about this event? Contact Jeremy Cheung and Jessica Li.