ANHEUSER-BUSCH Film, DM, Case study Turning Beer Into Water [1:45] by Fleishman Hillard

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Turning Beer Into Water [1:45]

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Industry Beers and Ciders, Public awareness
Media Film, Direct marketing, Case study
Market United States
Agency Fleishman Hillard
Released February 2018


Lions Reach 2018
PR Lions Internal Communications & Employee Engagement Bronze Lion

Credits & Description

FLEISHMANHILLARD New York, USA Entrant Company
AB INBEV New York, USA Idea Creation
AB INBEV New York, USA Production
FLEISHMANHILLARD New York, USA Media Placement
AB INBEV New York, USA Media Placement
Gemma Hart AB InBev Strategic Oversight
Molly Kunst AB InBev Program management
Stephanie Walsh AB InBev Program management
Carmen Rodriguez David Case film creative inputs
Gabriella Fabbro David Case film creative inputs
Emma Cummings-Krueger FleishmanHillard Media relations and monitoring
Sharon Davallu FleishmanHillard Creative and social media management
Jennifer Mackie FleishmanHillard Social media management
Michael Moroney FleishmanHillard Media relations management
Jacob Porpossian FleishmanHillard Creative Strategy
Alex Roberts FleishmanHillard Media relations management
Lisa Sides FleishmanHillard Broadcast monitoring
Colin Snell FleishmanHillard Media relations
Tayler Tchoukaleff FleishmanHillard Program management
Lindsey Terschluse Anheuser-Busch Program management
Ricardo Marques AB InBev VP Marketing Budweiser
Ricardo Marques AB InBev Case film creative inputs
Monica Rustgi AB InBev Senior Brand Director, Budweiser US
Monica Rustgi AB InBev Case film creative inputs
Anselmo Ramos David Chief Creative Officer & Founder
Anselmo Ramos David Case film creative inputs
Gaston Bigio David Chief Creative Officer & Founder
Gaston Bigio David Case film creative inputs
Tony Kalathara David Creative Director
Tony Kalathara David Case film creative inputs
Ricardo Casal David Executive Creative Director
Ricardo Casal David Case film creative inputs
Juan Javier Peña Plaza David Associate Creative Director
Juan Javier Peña Plaza David Case film creative inputs
Veronica Beach David Head of Global Production
Veronica Beach David Case film creative inputs
Renata Neumann David Producer
Renata Neumann David Case film creative inputs
Carmen Rodriguez David Senior Account Director
Monique Beauchamp David Case film creative inputs
Marina Rodrigues David Associate Producer
Marina Rodrigues David Case film creative inputs
Barbara Karalis David Senior Business Affairs Manager
Barbara Karalis David Case film creative inputs
Jon Carlaw David Director Strategic Planning
Jon Carlaw David Case film creative inputs
Matias Candia David Senior Planner
Matias Candia David Case film creative inputs
Paulo Fogaça David Managing Director, Head of Account Services
Paulo Fogaça David Case film creative inputs
Gabriella Fabbro David Account Director
Monique Beauchamp David Account Supervisor
Last fall, U.S. communities, from the Gulf Coast to California, were struck by devastating natural disasters. In the face of these tragedies, A-B jumped into action, leveraging production and logistical strengths to provide millions of emergency drinking water cans to communities in Texas, Florida, Louisiana, Puerto Rico and California.

This 30-year-old program had previously received modest publicity and awareness but in 2017, we saw an opportunity to expand our storytelling, particularly with our colleagues. When disaster struck, our first priority was our impacted colleagues and their communities. We worked quickly to ensure the safety of each colleague and the status of our facilities, sharing updates with our full employee base and supply chain so everyone was aware of their colleagues’ safety and how they could help.

Effective and open communications empowered colleagues to lend a hand and share this inspiring news with their communities, complementing the broader communications strategy.

Our strategy focused on leveraging our creative concept – showing A-B colleagues going above and beyond their normal duties to help those in need. From those producing the emergency drinking water over Labor Day weekend to colleagues from every corner of the country making donations to A-B’s employee sponsored disaster relief fund, we highlighted the work each person was doing to support their colleagues and communities.

At the same time, we used internal communications to both provide vital information to colleagues in areas impacted by natural disasters, and to keep A-B’s workforce nationwide apprised of their colleagues’ ongoing safety. We leveraged this internal content beyond colleagues, to tailor products in order to reach additional key audiences, such as wholesalers, supply chain partners and business partners.

We developed an internal communications program to rally the entire A-B community across the country, inspiring them to engage and help their affected colleagues.

Since 1988, Anheuser-Busch (A-B) has provided over 79 million cans of emergency drinking water to people impacted by natural disasters. While water donations have been a mainstay of our CSR efforts for years, an innovative storytelling approach took the program beyond our Georgia brewery where emergency water is produced, to inspire 18,000+ A-B colleagues across the country.

With our colleagues at the center, this campaign featured teams rolling up their sleeves to help their fellow Americans. This not only gave a boost to colleague awareness of the longtime program, but revealed the major impact our work has in our communities.

Employee comradery flourished as colleagues nationwide contributed time, effort and monetary donations. Our employee-sponsored disaster relief fund not only raised more than $60,000, but was updated quickly with a PayPal option to make it even easier for colleagues to donate. Employees local to the disasters joined home clean-up efforts in their communities, and those at other locations hosted events and drives to raise donations, including selling t-shirts and creating and fulfilling Amazon wish lists of cleaning supplies and generators, helping those affected get back on their feet and rebuild their lives.

The internal communications highlighting the employees’ efforts totaled nearly 40 stories (11,000 views) across internal channels and near-daily email updates to colleagues. The story of our employees’ dedication inspired the management team to contribute an additional $350,000 in company funding to the employee fund, as well as another $250,000 personal donation from former chairman August A. Busch III.

Following significant nationwide coverage of A-B’s efforts, Secretary of Labor R. Alexander Acosta visited A-B’s Georgia Brewery on Labor Day to thank our colleagues in the brewery for helping their fellow workers in hurricane-hit regions.

One of the most import results of the program was the immense sense of pride our colleagues felt, knowing that they played a central role in helping communities across the country during their time of need.

When Hurricane Harvey hit the Gulf Coast, A-B colleagues in the Georgia Brewery paused beer production, and the company distributed 555,000 cans of emergency drinking water to those in need. We assembled a team to develop content aligned with our creative concept and strategy, using all relevant internal channels to communicate with colleagues. We continued to bolster our internal communications strategy throughout the aftermath in Houston, where A-B operates a large brewery and glass bottle facility as well as a craft partner.

We kept the A-B workforce apprised of their colleagues’ well-being, shared updates on donations for those impacted, and supported communications for A-B leadership who visited Houston to assist in Harvey’s aftermath.

Two weeks later, when A-B shipped over 310,000 cans of water to communities in Florida prior to Hurricane Irma’s landfall, we followed suit, continuing internal updates, this time focused on A-B colleagues at the Jacksonville facility.

Campaign Description
A-B’s tradition of producing emergency drinking water is admirable, but it’s not new. What made this year’s effort unique, and a resounding success, was an innovative storytelling approach, creatively focused on the A-B colleagues stepping up to help their fellow Americans in need, as well as a Community-First communications approach centered around the impacted residents of Florida, Texas, Louisiana, California and Puerto Rico, including A-B colleagues in affected areas.

Humanizing the A-B water donation campaign by featuring both those colleagues producing canned water in A-B’s Georgia brewery, along with the needs of communities hit by these natural disasters brought new life to this 30-year-old water donation program, and resulted in levels of internal engagement and advocacy that were higher than ever before.