Helping an upstart vodka brand go from startup to #1 imported vodka in the USA

  • Shopper Marketing
  • Ongoing Brand Development
  • Creative Strategy
  • Point-of-sale
  • Packaging

Over the past 15+ years, we’ve helped SVEDKA achieve an average 41% sales increase every single year (80P, 1L).

We’ve helped accomplish that through consistency, strategy, and a lot of hard work. Though we’ve supported the brand at nearly every touchpoint, our expertise has been in mastering the retail aisle—where brands must win split-second decisions and cross-shopping moments, without the assistance of TV campaigns or reliable activations.

Through years of retail strategy, breakthrough creative, and ever-evolving retail insights, we’ve helped SVEDKA launch more than 100 national retail campaigns while managing an ever growing roster of 107 SKUs—all to become the #1 imported vodka brand in the USA.

2005–12

MAKING A SPLASH

During SVEDKA’s start-up years, BRIGADE got scrappy and learned to work smarter in order to keep up with the brand’s rapid growth and fast-paced workflow. We took risks, worked late, and embraced the fire-drill mentality. During this era, our work spanned a variety of channels and took many forms—we created an annual advertising campaign, upgraded sales materials, helped with a published book, and designed a float for a Pride parade. We also supported the launch of the infamous SVEDKA Fembot. During this phase, we extended SVEDKA’s campaigns and brought them to life in multi-channel executions. Then (and now), we helped the brand with whatever they needed.

2012–15

GOING PRODUCT-FORWARD

In 2012, we helped SVEDKA launch a completely overhauled bottle design for its lineup of flavors. With its change of packaging, the brand retired the Fembot and went deep on flavored vodkas. We helped the brand gracefully manage the shift from the Fembot and helped them maintain an iconic and recognizable brand even as the bottle and spokesperson were completely changed out—a challenge for any brand, especially one that had only recently begun to have widespread name recognition.

We maintained a focus on brand consistency as the brand launched 2+ new SKUs per year, in addition to seasonal and core programming.

 

We’ve helped SVEDKA release an average of 6 national retail sales programs per year, including shopper strategy and point of purchase support.

2016–17

EXPANDING INTO NEW SHOPPER MARKETS

In 2016, SVEDKA hit their largest milestone yet, reaching #1 imported vodka in the U.S. During this era, our work focused more on building customized, seasonal programs. In the process, we became retail experts, working more with retail, trade, and promotions agencies (not as much with brand teams), and supporting sales windows. Following their new #1 achievement, we helped the brand release their notorious Blue Raspberry flavor.

2018–19

Re-Birth of the Key Image

Continuing with the bottle being the focus and more customized-seasonal visuals, each program started to take a life on its own. This was achieved with a new slightly transparent bottle surrounded by energy, consistent visuals and the introduction of neons with the Tiki On-Premise program.

This was the time period that we created an original high-success Halloween retail campaign that helped SVEDKA tower above its competition and also when SVEDKA debuted its seltzer line.

 

We’ve helped launch more than 25 new consumer packaged goods for SVEDKA, over a wide range of touchpoints including packaging, key visuals, retail displays, shopper strategy, and messaging.

2019–21

A NEW CAMPAIGN FOR A NEW CONSUMER

In 2019, we helped SVEDKA build on the success of the previous year and updated the campaign visuals to underscore and amplify their new ad campaign, Bring Your Own Spirit. SVEDKA’s high-energy visuals continued to evolve with more neons helping to electrify the brand’s robust line of programs. These rollouts were all accompanied by comprehensive toolkits, supplying visual guidance with point-of-sale items.

SVEDKA Rosé, Pure Infusions, and another Vodka Soda line were also added to the roster of flavor-forward Vodkas.

EXPANDING UPON A NEW CAMPAIGN INVESTMENT

Bring Your Own Spirit “2.0” led to finer-tuned SVEDKA visual IDs used on all of its programs. This included adding more diversity to the neon headlines, lifestyle background shots, garnished cocktails with charged splashes, and new QR activation prompts. All these elements helped propel SVEDKA’s new floor-stopping bottle displays. SVEDKA also added Cherry Limeade to its shelf of products.

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