Heineken: The Star Gifter

Campaign Summary

Heineken wanted to entice its target audience of Vietnamese Millennial men during the season of Tet Nguyen Dan, also known as Tet. During this Vietnamese holiday, wealthy men give but don't receive gifts. For the "Star Gifter" campaign, the brand celebrated these gift givers by telling their stories in an authentic way in real time on Facebook.


Objective and Context:

Heineken had three key goals at the beginning of 2016:

  • To give its beer credibility with a Vietnamese audience by creating an emotional connection during the Vietnamese New Year celebration, Tet Nguyen Dan, when public sentiment is imbued with nostalgia and tradition
  • To increase brand preference and positive brand sentiment by tracking social conversations were related to drinking and Heineken on popular social channels, especially Facebook
  • To switch 10 percent of current beer drinkers to Heineken

Target Audience:

Heineken combined social listening data with internal sales data to generate consumer insights. This created a clear picture of the target group: "Men of the World." Men of the World were young male Vietnamese consumers who were modern, forward-thinking, and had a global outlook on life. They were 25- to 32-year-old urbanites with significant disposable income. During Tet, Men of the World gave but did not get anything in return. Their social conversations showed that they were running out of ideas for which gifts to give.

Creative Strategy:

During Tet, the target audience feels pressure to give gifts as a sign of their success. Heineken believed that all the people who gave and got nothing in return should be recognized and celebrated. If people chose Heineken as a gift over other beers, they would be surprised with what they received in return. This Tet, Heineken recognized the "Heineken gifters" and treated them as "Star Gifters."


Overall Campaign Execution:

Heineken sought out Men of the World who were purchasing its beer in stores. It followed those who bought the beer for gift-giving and placed them at the center of its stories. The brand collaborated with A-list celebrities to plan a surprise gift for stars as its way of giving back to the men who keep giving but rarely get anything in return. The Heineken Star Gifter campaign was launched on Facebook to deliver authentic stories of real people in real time.

Twenty-eight year-old Huy Quang (pronounced as Hwee Kwang) was one of the Star Gifters. He was a Heineken fan known to give his family and friends "star treatment" by giving them gifts and generally being a gentleman. Heineken rewarded his generosity by making him a star for one special evening.

Mobile Execution:

With smart mobile devices becoming ubiquitous, internet habits are quickly shifting, too. Web internet traffic dwindles as Tet gets closer, while mobile internet traffic begins to surge. Seeing this shift in consumer media habits, Heineken decided to harness the power of social media. Facebook was the best channel to reach 35 million highly-engaged consumers throughout Vietnam. That is 40 percent of the entire population of the country.

While the search for the Heineken's Star Gifters was going on, Heineken celebrities were featured in innovative Facebook content formats that were just about to be launched. Heineken celebrities were shown giving gifts and sharing Heineken in 3D, carousel, and cinemagraph formats.

Results (including context, evaluation, and market impact)

Heineken reached 11,773,519 people on Facebook, an 85 percent reach of the target audience. Mobile internet access accounted for 80 percent of internet traffic on days closer to Tet. There were 155 million views generated by the campaign, and Heineken was the most talked about beer brand in Vietnam.

Categories: | Industries: | Objectives: Innovation, Mobile Social, Mobile Video | Awards: Finalist