Energy BBDO and Jim Beam parting ways

Beam Global Spirits & Wine is in the process of conducting an agency review following its split with Energy BBDO, Chicago’s branch of the world-wide agency. The two are parting after a six-year partnership that produced award-winning creative work for the Jim Beam and Canadian Club brands. Both companies describe the split as mutual, with the reasoning pointing to the changes earlier this year in the CEO and CMO of Beam Global.

Much of the great work the agency did was in revitalizing the Canadian Club brand. That effort gave new life to the long-declining brand by turning its weakness, aging demographics, into a strength, with an effort dubbed “Damn Right Your Dad Drank It”, This campaign used vintage 1960s imagery to make the “dad” character less of a Ward Cleaver and more of a Don Draper, someone the youth market could aspire to be, not attempt to rebel from. This effort improves sales significantly.

dadThe Jim Beam brand itself had a little more difficulty establishing a brand character. In the last 18 months, Beam has shifted from a campaign dubbed “The Stuff Inside,” which hailed personal character, to pushing Bourbon as “America’s Native Spirit,” with splashy print ads that railed against pink cocktails, to the current campaign, entitled “Guys Never Change.” (see the TV in an earlier post).

guysEnergy BBDO CCO Dan Fietsam expressed pride in the agency’s work on the business leading up to the split: “Damn Right we did great work.”


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