When Carlsberg announced last month that it was going to turn its ‘Probably the best lager in the world’ slogan on its head, nobody would have guessed how brutal it would be in its bid to address a slide in UK-based drinkers.
But the Brits love an underdog and self-deprecating humour, and the online reaction to Carlsberg’s online campaign, which started with some retweets last week, has been one of surprise.
We’re alright Jack
“Our generation have trust issues because we were all raised on those awesome adverts saying Carlsberg is the best lager in the world … ” read Carlsberg’s retweet of a presumably former customer of the beer brand in the UK.
“… only to finally taste the shit and realise it’s like drinking the bath water your Nan died in.”
The retweet prompted ‘Jack’ to offer his services to take over as the company’s “social media dude because I will do a 100 percent better job than whoever promoted this”, to which Carlsberg replied, saying the retweet was the work of its ‘Master Brewer’.
Like drinking piss
Carlsberg has now followed up on the retweets with a video campaign (see below or via this link; made by Fold7) in which its UK staff read out other damning statements made about the beer brand in Britain.
Among the statements are: “Carlsberg tastes like the rancid piss of Satan”, “Carlsberg tastes like a puddle of fetid camel’s piss”, “Carlsberg tastes like a urinal cube that had been in a trough for a week”, and “Carlsberg tastes like a bitter divorce”.
Carlsberg’s director of marketing, Lynsey Woods, is surprised that people think the retweets are a mistake – the result of faulty AI, some have suggested.
Carlsberg is surprised they could think “you could make a mistake on such a big scale. If we’re honest, we did not expect that,” she told Campaign.
Includes a rebranding
As part of the campaign, the beer is being rebranded as Carlsberg Danish Pilsner.
“We’re broadcasting the fact that we are a pilsner – we always have been, but we never really made that clear before,” explained Woods.
Some 1.6 million people in the UK have stopped drinking ‘standard’ pilsner options like Carlsberg, Carling and Fosters, switching their attention to beers made with more craft.