Friday, April 04, 2008

Yeah, Time to Boycott Absolut

Brilliant move on Absolut Vodka's part.

And sadly the Captain is quite fond of martini's.

No more of the Captain's money for Absolut.


Ramsey said...

Seeming as I live in part of the green shaded area I'll join your boycott.

Anonymous said...

The ad I saw had the Absolut bottle in Venezuela, which gave it a whole different spin to me, anyways.

jj said...

So Absolut is either 1) a bunch of dolts or 2) brilliant.

There brilliant if US economy dives to deep recession and almost noone will be able to buy their expensive swill because they are full of debt, etc. Absolut will sell it in mexico where all the legal (and illegal) immigrants have been sending their money for the last twenty years and saving it for a rainy day....

Anonymous said...

I thought you would be a purist and only use gin in a martini.

Mike said...

Genius. It's like when starbucks closed for 3 hours during peak traffic to "retrain it's baristas". FREE PUBLICITY. Doesn't matter if it's good or bad, besides who does boycotts anymore?

Patrick said...

Here is some contact info:
Jeffrey Moran
Director of Public Relations and Events
The Absolut Spirits Company, Inc.
1370 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10019
Phone, direct: +1 212 641 87 20

Bob said...

Martini's really should contain gin, but I get the point. The ad looks like those banners that were waving during the great "anti-anti-immigration" riots in Southern California not so many years ago.

Sergeant Security said...

It's just a marketing ploy. Absolut is a premium brand with strong brand loyalty - the vast majority of people who already drink Absolut in the US will not be swayed to a competitor, regardless of the complaints in the media and on blogs (not that I'm saying your complaint is invalid).

The Western markets for alcohol are over-saturated and intensely regulated. Many countries are increasing taxation on alcohol in a (futile) attempt to deter people from drinking:

Contrast this to undeveloped markets such as South America, where something like >75% of local markets are served by small domestic brewers and distillers. It's where the growth is.

Reaching out to those markets by playing on sympathy for immigration and border regulations is a smart move by Pernod Ricard (the owner of Absolut brand).

The style of advert was contentious, but I bet you could look at advertising campaigns in many other countries and identify campaigns that denigrate another nationality in a similar way. The outcry here was purely because the big "immigration" and "border control" trigger phrases are involved, and we all know about the issues the USA has around those. Here's just one alternate example:

The fact is this storm in a teacup will pass quickly. By next month everyone will have forgotten about it, but Pernod will have massively raised brand awareness in a country that represents a fairly untapped market. They'll gain more consumers in a less regulated market than they'll lose from the USA based on this campaign.

So the Captain won't buy Absolut anymore? I assume then you won't be drinking Havana Club, Malibu, Beefeater, Wild Turkey et al either? Most people don't even know what brands are owned by what companies. People will stand in a bar with a glass of Havana Club angrily complaining how they won't drink Absolut, whilst we savvy pundits smile inwardly.

Plus, after all, it's only an advert. There are other things to worry about, one of which might well be the USA's actual immigration management and border controls...

Anonymous said...

Be serious. Martini's are made with gin.

And no purchase Absolut ever. They can go ahead and dominate the Mexico market, such as it is.

Capitalist Pig said...

I disagree that Absolut's ad is "shwoing sympathy to immigration and border regulations." Showing sympathy to immigration does not mean you portray the country they're trying to immigrate to as really being part of their own country.

IMO they could have done the ad differently to not offend Americans, but still attract Mexicans.

I will admit that it was a smart piece of advertising, as it will grab the attention of the Mexicans.

This being a Swedish brand, they obviously have no loyalty to any North American nation per se and are banking on the notion that Americans who see this ad will forget about it soon.

Andrew L said...

What's with all these comments about the Mexican-American border? I assumed the Captain was swearing off Absolut because he found out it was owned by the Swedish government. As if Vodka wasn't already enough of a communist drink.

FIRE Coalition said...

The official Boycott has begun. FIRE Coalition, the largest, grass-roots organization fighting illegal immigration has launched as part of the project. The boycott represents all of the organizations in the coalition and their outrage at Absolut’s ad campaign. Today, they were featured on Neil Cavuto’s Your World on Fox News Channel

Captain Capitalism said...

I find it cute that the $13 trillion US economy is somehow dismissed as the growing $1 trillion Mexican economy is a growing one and thus presents more opportunity. As much as I genuinely wish the Mexican people can attain 1st world economic status, that doesn't change the math that Absolut just shot itself in its foot.

Anonymous said...


Be a MAN and stop drinking vodka martinis.

REAL MEN drink REAL MARTINIS and those are made with GIN, preferable with Tanqueray Ten.

Andrew L said...

I find it cute that so many of your readers care less about the fate of the American Southwest and more about the revelation that you make your martinis with vodka.

Captain Capitalism said...

I know, I know! I do prefer gin martini's, but the varied sort of martini's use vodka. Cripes, you'd think a martini, vodka or gin would be the mark of some refinement.

Sergeant Security said...

Captain, $13trillion market for what? The market might be larger in the US, but it's still over-saturated and heavily regulated.

You're assuming that the fallout of this advertising campaign is enough to cause a serious dent in Pernod's sales in the USA (which it won't be), as well as wipe out any gains made by entry into the new market.

Sorry, but on this one I just can't agree with you. Little impact on an existing market and increased profile (leading to increased sales) in a new market equals growth.