Jozi market-goers were recently surprised and delighted as 8,000 paper butterflies were released into the air above the popular Neighbourgoods Market in Braamfontein.
The bright origami butterflies were embedded with indigenous local flower seeds, and made from organic, biodegradable seeded paper. The butterflies were part of an activation for Strongbow Apple Cider in partnership with newly appointed advertising agency, M&C Saatchi Abel Cape Town, and activation agency, Sonic State.
According to Gordon Ray, founding partner and executive creative director at M&C Saatchi Abel CT, the concept was modelled on the monarch butterfly migration, where millions of monarch butterflies migrate across America each year.
“Strongbow is a real apple cider made from real orchard apples,” says Marcel Swain, Strongbow’s Marketing Manager. “We’ve always believed nature is the ultimate refreshment, so to launch our brand in SA, we identified some of the most dramatic, inspiring, refreshing moments in nature and we remixed them to rejuvenate cities across the country. This is just the first.”
After a global rebrand, Strongbow has launched in South Africa as an entirely new brand with new packaging, a new logo, a new recipe and a series of new taste variants. They also have a new global brand line - “Nature Remix.”
“We positioned Strongbow in South Africa as the urban cider – a positive, natural apple cider grown from nature and remixed for the city,” says Ray. “We drew from the line “Nature Remix” to create a brand purpose that would resonate with a local market. That purpose is to remix natural beauty into urban spaces to rejuvenate the people who live there.
This activation was something we created to bring that purpose to life.”
The butterflies weren’t just intended to be beautiful, they had a function. They were embedded with indigenous flower seeds, which meant that they brought nature into the city wherever they fell. They were also designed as coupons so that when people caught them out of the air they could be redeemed for an ice-cold Strongbow at the bar.
The agency worked closely with a typographer/calligrapher to ensure that the copy printed on each butterfly’s wing looked as much like a real butterfly’s wing as possible. The attention to detail certainly paid off.
“We found on the day that many people took their butterflies back from promoters (after receiving their Strongbow) so that they could take them home and either plant or keep them,” says Ray, noting that thousands of people got to experience the personality of Strongbow. In addition, the video of the activation was viewed and shared by tens of thousands of people in just a few days.
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