It’s iced tea season, and Lipton, perhaps the best-known brand among tea makers in the U.S., has teamed up with country artist Lady Antebellum for a new marketing campaign that attempts to leverage the positivity of the band’s persona with that of the drink.
The campaign, which marks a coming together of Unilever (Lipton’s parent company) and the Pepsi Lipton Partnership (which distributes ready-to-drink teas under the Lipton brand), is the largest advertising undertaking Lipton has seen in several years, according to a company representative. (She declined to give numbers, but said spending would be double the outlay of last year.) The Lady Antebellum spots promote both the ready-to-drink tea as well as a new Tea & Honey to-go powder.
In one commercial for the ready-to-drink tea, the band is shown backstage preparing to appear in front of a “hot” crowd. As they drink a bottle of Lipton iced tea, their bodies fill with silhouettes of water, tea leaves and sunshine. “When you put goodness inside, you can’t help but shine on the outside,” says a voiceover. A second commercial, for the Tea & Honey to-go powder, depicts the band delayed by a broken down tour bus on a hot day. After drinking a glass of instant iced tea, the band heads to a park for an impromptu performance.
Both spots end with the tagline “Drink positive,” which is intended to express the spirit of both the brand and the band. “Lipton and Lady Antebellum share a positive and approachable style, and we’re excited to bring the ‘Drink Positive’ spirit to life—together—in a big way this year,” said Marc Hanson, an executive with the Lipton Pepsi Partnership, in a statement e-mailed to Marketing Daily.
In addition to the commercials (which will each run in 15- and 30-second versions), the group will appear in a series of behind-the-scenes tour webisodes. In the videos (a first for the band), the group engages in a series of challenges to determine which band member knows the others the best. The campaign also includes print, radio, digital and retail elements as well as a Facebook sweepstakes that will offer fans a chance to meet the group in Nashville and win live music downloads.
Lipton is also supporting the band’s benefit concert for Henryville, Ind., a community hit by devastating tornadoes last month. Lipton will match every $1 donation received through the cause’s Web site, http://www.rebuildinghenryville.com, up to $50,000.