Smirnoff seeks inspiration from emojis

We’ve seen emojis used in the place of words, with the poor peach and eggplant becoming symbolic of more than just fruit and vegetables. And now, Smirnoff is challenging its fans to use emojis as cocktail ingredients in a new campaign, via Special Group, called ‘Emojitail’.

The campaign is a continuation of the ‘Pure Potential’ platform, which launched back in 2014, with a mission to unlock the potential of almost any ingredient. But this time, it’s emojis that are being unlocked in the ‘Emojitail’ cocktail maker online, which sees the user select different emojis to be mixed up and turned into unique drinks.

There are the classics like White Russian, Screwdriver or Sex on the Beach, through to some brand new creations like the Magical Watermelon and the Cocoloco.

Over 3000 cocktails have been made and shared online in the first month, with weekly winners receiving ‘Emojitail’ kits to bring their winning drinks to life.

Special Group executive creative director/partner Tony Bradbourne says it’s been creating quite a bit of online excitement, which is translating into some strong sales.

“It’s a great digital extension of Smirnoff’s ongoing ‘#Purepotential’ platform.”

An earlier example of Smirnoff being a player in the digital innovation space is the ‘Smirnoff Selfie‘ campaign (via Young & Shand), which gave the platform a selfie-twist, by using photos as inspiration for a series of cocktails created in Facebook Live videos.

It was one of two campaigns named as finalists in the Beacons’ ‘Best use of Social’ category this year. However, neither were named as a winner on the night.

There was also no winner named in the ‘Best use of Mobile’ category, suggesting there was a lack of standout innovation or savvy strategy on show in the two categories.

StopPress asked Bradbourne for his thoughts on the matter and while he can’t comment on the Beacons, he looks at the wider media awards to say there’s been a lot of innovative thinking in the space.

“Look at Axis this year and last – ‘Pedigree Found’ was cool, ‘Clever Kash’, we won the Gold in the mobile category this year with 2degrees ‘Data Hunt’ – there has been a lot of smart creative thinking in these categories.”

He also points out the Smirnoff ‘Instagram your Fridge‘ campaign Special Group worked on, which won a Wood Pencil in the Digital Marketing/Use of Social Media category at the 2016 D&AD Awards and set the tone for Smirnoff’s digital innovation.

“…it brought ‘Pure Potential’ to life in an engaging and clever social way, and played a key part in a campaign that continues to drive sales,” Bradbourne says.

“But maybe a key point is that ‘Instagram your Fridge’ was created specifically for that social media channel, and that audience, rather than it being a campaign that just uses Facebook or Instagram as a broadcast channel. There is an important difference.”

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