Small Agency, Big Idea: Lone Star Beer ‘Keeps You Texan’ in campaign from Callen

Ahead of Ad Age’s
10th Annual Small Agency Conference in New Orleans  July
30-31
, we’ll be turning the spotlight onto standout work from
the industry’s tiny but mighty creative players. We begin with
Callen, the Austin-based shop of about a dozen staffers founded by
Wieden & Kennedy vet Craig Allen. The agency created a new
campaign for Lone Star beer’s new low alcohol, low-cal beer
featuring ads with a totally Texan vibe.

Texas-based Lone Star beer, owned by Pabst Brewing Company, just
dropped its most significant marketing push in 30 years—and
it’s dripping with the luxurious laziness of a hot summer
day. 

The “Keeps You Texan” campaign was created by Austin-based

Callen
, the small shop founded by Craig Allen, the Wieden &
Kennedy alum behind notable campaigns such as Old Spice’s “The
Man Your Man Can Smell Like” and “Responses.” It promotes
Lone Star 24/7, the brand’s new low-alcohol, low-calorie brew,
and features various scenarios illustrating how 24/7 is the perfect
companion for enjoying the low-key splendors Texas has on
offer. 

The launch spot (above), for example, centers on a sole
mosquito. As the camera zooms in on the bug, an easy, poetic
voiceover explains how the little pest claims to “own the
night.” But he won’t stop Lone Star beer drinkers from enjoying
the outdoors. As a bottle of the brew smashes down on the critter,
“This is Texas,” the V.O. proclaims. “We’ll go inside when
we’re good and ready.”

Another spot depicts a crew of young folks sitting by a camper,
chilling out as they watch the sun go down. “In Texas, we know if
you stick around long enough, a fine day smooths into an even finer
evening,” the voiceover says. “Case in point, the West Texas
sunset. Yes, only here, can you set eyes on all its cosmic glory,
because West Texas is in Texas, and that’s how geography
works.”

With the witty copy set against fairly still, spare tableaux,
the ads feel a bit like the love child of the classic “Miller
High Life Man” campaign from Wieden & Kennedy and old spots
for Corona Extra from Cramer-Krasselt, in which folks would sit
around doing pretty much nothing as they sip their brew on the
each. These, however, are totally Texan in vibe. 

Allen explains that the challenge of the campaign was to give
voice to a brand that has legendary status in Texas but has done
little to communicate it. “It’s like the Budweiser of Texas, and
it means something when you drink one and people drink it with
pride,” Allen says. “We wanted something that felt true to Texas
and it’s weird, diverse culture without being cliche and playing
into tired old Texas stereotypes.”

The ads are currently running in the Texas market on broadcast
and on connected TV. They also convey how the brew’s lower
alcohol content helps drinkers maintain their “Texas demeanor,”
no matter how long they’re hanging out by the grill or enjoying
sunsets with friends. “Hopefully it makes you long for summer
nights and a cold drink,” Allen says.

The brew is among a slew of new lower-alcohol offerings hitting
the market as booze and beer brands look to appeal to
health-conscious millennials who are drinking less than their
parents did. 

Source: FS – _Marketing
Small Agency, Big Idea: Lone Star Beer ‘Keeps You Texan’ in campaign from Callen