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mike's Hard Seltzer Goes Refreshingly Obvious for Latest Launch

Seltzer brand enlists FCB New York, FCB Inferno and Saturday Night Live director Mike Bernstein for playful new global campaign

mike's Hard Seltzer Goes Refreshingly Obvious for Latest Launch

mike’s Hard Seltzer has teamed with creative network FCB to launch a new tagline and advertising campaign, ‘Refreshingly Obvious’, designed to establish the brand and differentiate this new product in the UK. 

Mike’s Hard Seltzer is a new type of alcoholic drink that provides maximum taste and refreshment with reduced calories. mike’s uses real fruit flavours, is vegan and gluten free and is full of great flavour. It’s essentially an alcoholic sparkling water, without the artificial sweeteners that you might find in other ready-to-drink beverages. The hard seltzer trend is one of the biggest that the beverages market has seen in recent years and is set to continue to skyrocket as people look for a light, refreshing beverage this summer.

The campaign was created by FCB New York in collaboration with FCB Inferno. The films are directed by Mike Bernstein, whose impressive portfolio ranges parody through comedy and includes work for the likes of Saturday Night Live, Funny or Die, and Comedy Central, to name a few.  The agency specifically sought a director who would align with the brand’s ethos of keeping it real, having fun, and not trying too hard, and Mike’s style, sense of humour, and directorial vision aligned perfectly with these values.

Each of the three main spots introduces a playful invention designed to solve an obvious problem by making summer drinking easier and more refreshing: the Vacooler which hoovers your deck while serving up mike’s, the Fanny Six-Pack cooler (that’s a bum bag in the UK) to hold your mike’s when your hands are full, and the Can-noodle, which keeps your mike’s cans at hand by the poolside. 

The campaign was born from the idea that, when you consider all the dumb stuff people have created (hoverboards that don’t hover, silent discos), it’s a wonder that it took this long for us to make mike’s Hard Seltzer: a simple and delicious blend of alcohol, real fruit flavour, and sparkling water. When you think about it, really, it’s refreshingly obvious.

Mike Bernstein said: “I really wanted to commit 100% to giving each of the ridiculous inventions that served as delivery mechanisms for mike’s Hard Seltzer with as much authenticity as the cans themselves. That meant no matter how silly they were, everything had to actually function properly for the camera. The humour is in the believability. Hopefully people are laughing at us for putting so much effort into making these funny things real, and that deep down, they kind of want one. I’ll feel very proud If anybody gets upset they can’t buy them for real. It’s a fun way of working, because the ads are really for the Mike’s Hard Seltzers, which are kind of like the products inside the products. It’s a real Russian Doll situation.”

Gabriel Schmitt, FCB New York chief creative officer said: “We are always hunting for insights that strike a nerve not only with audiences but with culture at large. It gets that much better when that allows to have so much fun coming up with refreshingly obvious things gen Zers want. Just like mike’s Hard Seltzer.”

Caitlin Partridge, global marketing director at AB InBev added: “mike’s is a brand that never tries too hard. Our Hard Seltzer is a refreshing blend of sparkling water, alcohol, and real fruit flavour. It’s really not complicated. But many people still don’t know what a Hard Seltzer is, so we wanted this campaign to help build that understanding, while introducing our audience to the playful, never take ourselves too seriously, personality of the brand.”

The films can be seen online, with out of home and radio supporting. Media is being handled by Vizeum and Draftline.

Featured Companies: FCB Inferno

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Global VP Beyond Beer: Thiago Zanettini

Global Marketing Director Mike’s: Caitlin Partridge

VP Beyond Beer Europe: Adrien Mahieu

Marketing Director Beyond Beer Europe: Aina Fuller

General Manager Mike’s UK: Marie Fukuura

Marketing Manager Mike’s UK: Alexandre Welens

FCB New York

Co-Chief Creative Officer: Gabriel Schmitt

Co-Chief Creative Officer: Michael Aimette

Executive Creative Director: Samira Ansari

Executive Creative Director: Scott Kaplan

Creative Director – Copy: Laszlo Szloboda

Creative Director – Art: Dan Grech

Senior Art Director: Lara Polovina

Copywriter: Chloe Bayhack

Chief Strategy Officer: Todd Sussman

Director Strategic Planning: James Friedman

Strategic Planning Director: Jamie Rutherford

President: Emma Armstrong

SVP, Group Account Director: Amy Ekins

Account Director: Pamela Natale

Account Supervisor: Laura Traflet

Account Executive: Logan Butler

Senior Project Manager: Joanna Groom

Director of Integrated Production: Adam Isidore

Producer: Brian Schierman

Producer: Pim Leeuwenkamp

Director of Business Affairs: Janice Katz

Senior Production Talent Manager: Janet Marone

FCB Inferno

Managing Director: Katy Wright

Chief Creative Officer: Owen Lee

Account Director: Jack Steer

Account Manager: Naomi Hallam

Integrated Strategist: Sam Zamani

Senior Creative: Sarah Lefkowith

Senior Creative: Aldie Pretorius

Co-Design Lead: Sarni Strachan

Producer: Russell Mallows

Producer: Sabrina May


Production Company: Alpen

Director: Mike Bernstein

Executive Producer: Christian Heuer

Producer: William Orozco-Cubbon

Production Manager: Christine Park

Production Coordinator: Joseph Kim


Music provided by: JSM Music

CEO/CCO/Co-Composer: Joel Simon

VP/Executive Producer: Jeff Fiorello

Co-Composer: Andrew Ybanez

Co-Composer: Gregory Jenkins

Producer: Norm Felker

Producer: Andrew Manning

Producer: Sharon Cha

Post Production

Post-Production Company: Secret Guy

Editor: Bill Cramer

Colourist: Matthew Rosenblum

Flame Artist: Graham Holly


Sound provided by: Lord + Thomas

Executive Producer: Celena Mossell

Senior Producer: Alex Bartczak

Audio Engineer: Batsi Zesaguli

Category: Alcoholic Beverages , Alcopops

Genre: Comedy , Dialogue , People