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Rewarding curiosity with crackers and a bottle of gin - #BehindTheIdea

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Christmas crackers are the prime symbol of festivityat every Christmas table celebration. And you certainly can't reject a good bottle of gin in full-on winter. What do you get when you mix the two?

After a year like no other, and to ensure Hendrick's gin was still on top of consumer's minds for the festive season, the brand partnered with the agency Space to develop a number of breathtaking murals last Christmas.

Today we are getting Behind the Idea to learn more about this amazing campaign and how it came to life – including a few secrets and interesting curiosities that were part of the campaign's production process.

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What was the brief?

With ongoing pressure from an ever-growing gin market and an unusual year impacting on sales, Hendrick’s wanted to ensure it was the festive gin of choice come Christmas, both as a gift and for hosting.

How did the initial pitch/brainstorming phase go?

Diving headfirst in the peculiar and elaborate world of the brand, we explored various different scenes and symbols of Christmas that we could bring to life through the theme of curiosity. From trapeze artists inside snow globes, to delivering cucumbers down chimneys, we finally landed on two visual thoughts that felt right for the brand.

Tell us more about the concept. How did it come to life, and why was it the right choice?

To represent gifting, we decided to utilise the most famous symbol of every Christmas table celebration, the cracker. However, rather than the token novelty gift or predictably Dad-level joke, ours would explode to reveal all manner of peculiarities; from a flying unicyclist to a parachuting mistletoe, as well as a bottle of Hendrick’s in a flurry of rose petals and cucumber slices.

For the hosting visual, we called upon various other notable figures from the Hendrick’s brand world to come together for the ultimate festive soirée. From a Hammerhead shark in a pinstripe suit to a man puckering up with a cucumber, the scene centred around the perfect serve, showing Hendrick’s to be the only choice for those looking to host a party to which all others would be measured.

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What was the production process like? What was the biggest challenge?

Being an incredibly detailed and intricate visual world, both concepts required us to show a lot of restraint so as not to overcomplicate the design and risk losing the original intent. With various media to cover from small digital display to giant 40ft high murals, it was a delicate process of knowing what to keep and what to lose, but we feel like we got the balance just right.

What is one funny or notable thing that happened during the production of the campaign?

Working on Hendrick’s regularly produces some of the most bizarre conversations and email chains of any brand we’ve worked on. One that comes to mind for this project was a debate about who should be invited to the party for the hosting visual, a guest list that at one point included a giraffe with a tinsel scarf and multiple tuxedo-wearing penguins. Yes, it’s an incredibly fun brand to work on.

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What’s the main message of the campaign and why does it matter?

Whether you’re looking for an unexpected gift or to give your guests the most peculiar party of the season, Hendrick’s gin is the only choice at Christmas.

What is one unique aspect of the campaign?

The client is continually championing the idea of “rewarding curiosity”, challenging us to hide little surprises for people to find. In this case, there is a small riddle about a certain legume hanging from the robin’s trumpet on the cracker visual.

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How long did it take from inception to delivery?

With various elements and adapts created for different global markets, about 3 months.

What do you hope it achieves for the brand?

With so many different offerings from the world of gin, we hope to reinforce Hendrick’s peculiar rose and cucumber credentials, ensuring it remains the premium choice of those looking for a less expected gin.

Credit list for the campaign?

Client: William Grant & Sons – Hendrick’s Global
Client contacts: Lisa Fitzsimons, Celine Weldon, Filipa Allen, James Taylor, James Keen, Caitlin Robertshawe

Agency: Space
Executive Creative Director: Greg McAlinden
Creatives: Liam Nicholson, Cameron Black
Account Handling: Sean Kelly, Katie Vine, Anthea Knight
Producer: Samantha Hardy
Agency Designers: Simon O’Brien, Will Meighan, Rosie Palmer
Media Agency: Vizeum UK, Vizeum Global

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