Lanson ‘Celebrating 40 Years of Champions’ / Space & Pilgrim
A British institution begun in 1877, The Championships, Wimbledon has become famous for more than just being the premier grass tennis tournament of the season. Strawberries and cream, royal sightings, crisp tennis whites and strict rules are now synonymous with the annual event. All these qualities have made the Grand Slam tournament a favourite event for the elite of Britain and tennis fans alike. With the best tickets to the men’s final going for upwards of £3,500 (each) it’s no wonder luxury Champagne brand Lanson is using its latest campaign, which celebrates its 40th year of partnership with Wimbledon, to show that the tennis tournament is accessible to all.
The Champagne house worked with Agency Space to launch a new campaign titled ‘Celebrating 40 Years of Champions’. The 70-second film begins with historical footage from 1977, the year the partnership began. The film proceeds into a montage showing how much has changed, and how much has stayed exactly the same over the four decades the brand has been associated with The Championships. Wooden rackets are a thing of the past, but the emotional wins and exceptional players have remained. The clip ends with the only voice-over of the whole ad, “The nation rejoices. But enough of nostalgia” before the line ‘Let’s toast the next 40 years of champions’ appears on screen.
Sport sponsorships are gold for brands. They offer great exposure and help brands reach out to new audiences. To maximise return on investment, advertisers just need to make sure their branding is aligned with the chosen sport, which is often harder than it sounds. Sure, New Balance reaches its target audience through its sponsorship of the London Marathon while Whole Earth’s partnership with British Triathlon helps it remain in the front of health-conscious consumers’ minds, but what does a luxury French Champagne brand get out of a partnership in sport? The answer lies in the shared currency of tradition and prestige.
Wimbledon is a special occasion for all. While centre court tickets cost the earth, us regular folk can still rub shoulders with the elite through a little thing called The Queue. In return for a night camping outside the tournament’s gates, fans can get access to the grounds and enjoy all that Wimbledon stands for. This is Lanson’s target audience. The current campaign is not about wooing those who might drink Champagne regularly, instead it seeks to resonate with those to whom the drink is a luxurious special treat. Aiming to attract a millennial audience the film is live now on social and will be featured on Wimbledon’s digital channels. And most symbolically, it is being shown to those waiting in The Queue.
Lanson’s Wimbledon campaign doesn’t stop with social, it is also advertising on the London Underground, the perfect way to target those of us travelling to the event by anything other than a helicopter. Forming part of the Champagne brand’s ‘Perfect Start’ platform, the creative shows tennis themed Lanson bottles with text peppered with tennis puns such as ‘Serve with Style ‘. These outdoor ads by Pilgrim are sure to spark interest among millennials by displaying the fun, limited-edition bottles which on their own succeed in showing the brand isn’t taking itself too seriously.
Lanson has taken its 40 year history with Wimbledon and modernised it. The Champagne brand has shirked a stuffy reputation and is hoping to be perceived as a fun-loving brand to be enjoyed in the moment. Its long standing sponsorship of Wimbledon has evolved as a way to market to experience-focused millennials. This audience isn’t purchasing Lanson for its well-known heritage, but choosing the fuzzy bright green bottles to accompany an enjoyable day out. Kate Middleton sightings are only an extra.