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M&C Saatchi create strategy for Ballantine's

Ballantine's Scotch whisky, part of the Chivas Brothers family of brands, has announced a new strategic brand positioning and accompanying marketing campaign.

Stay True, Leave an Impression serves as “an invitation to consumers to express themselves in a genuine and authentic way, applauding conviction and self-belief”. The global campaign, which is a progression from the brand’s successful ‘Leave an Impression’ campaign launched in 2007, has begun rolling out across key markets, aiming to unify all brand communications across the Ballantine’s range.

M&C Saatchi London developed the campaign, which will feature a number of protagonists who epitomise the message of being genuine, authentic and ultimately staying true to yourself.

These protagonists are shown across all iterations of the advertising creative in situations that reflect their passion and commitment to staying true; demonstrating that whatever you do, it’s about doing it with conviction, doing it because you believe in it.

This will be brought to life in multiple channels, principally via a television spot to be showcased on MTV and The Discovery Channel amongst others, but also including a print campaign which will run across press, outdoor and online media.

The 60 second TV commercial, The Drummer, was shot by Jake Nava, tells the story of a drummer, who performs not because he wants the money, the fame or to be adored; but because it is who he is. This story is enhanced by its leading light, Ben Mead, who serves as the embodiment of Stay True, having rejected the traditional path of record contracts and instead favouring less well-known venues where his band feel that their music is best appreciated.The TVC, a director with a wealth of experience in both music videos and advertising.

The campaign is currently rolling out across South America (including in Mexico, Chile and Brazil) and southern and central Europe, with other markets globally rolling out throughout 2013 and into 2014.

M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment, the brand engagement arm of the M&C Saatchi Group, together with Ballantine’s digital agency, Work Club, will be delivering a Global BTL campaign that celebrates the new positioning via digital and PR. This will launch in parallel to the TV and print campaign.

Jeremy Hemmings, global client director at M&C Saatchi London added: “We are delighted with the launch of the Ballantine’s Stay True campaign.  We’ve gone back to the roots of the brand to establish what we see as a real conviction position that distinguishes it from its close competitors. This has allowed us to produce creative work which exudes real passion from our brand protagonists, cutting through some of the false gloss you tend to expect from many brands in this category.”


19 November 2013 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor