Whyte & Mackay introduces Wildcat Gin to travelling consumers with a head-turning experiential campaign just in time for the holidays

Positioned as the ‘gin of the night’, Wildcat Gin is a tempting and decadent spirit which has enjoyed huge success in the UK domestic market since its launch in 2018, becoming the go-to gin for up-tempo, after-dark occasions. This exciting spirit is distilled especially for mixing and its award-winning bottle design combined with its mysterious brand story have made it a hit with millennial shoppers.

The gin takes its inspiration from the 18th century, when gin was so popular it was outlawed. At the time, Captain Dudley Bradstreet – a rogue and adventurer – arrived in London and set up a scheme to sell gin in secret. He hung the sign of a black cat over his window, and let it be known that by knocking three times, a generous measure of gin would be dispensed once money was placed inside the cat’s mouth. Before long, cat signs began to appear all over the city, and a new gin craze was born.

This vibrant piece of the spirit’s history is brought to life by Wildcat’s Temptation Hotel, currently located at London in World Duty Free’s main tax and duty free store in Heathrow Terminal 5, which gives shoppers the opportunity to discover and experience the gin. Visitors to the Temptation Hotel are greeted by the flamboyant concierge and invited to sample the gin in two perfectly mixed concoctions – the Wildcat Bramble or the Wildcat & Tonic.

Whyte & Mackay has partnered with Dufry for the exclusive launch of this product in travel retail, with a campaign set to run in the travel retailer’s World Duty Free stores at selected UK airports through December until 2nd January 2020. The campaign kicked off with a special sampling event on 6 December, which was hosted by drag queen extraordinaire Johnny Bones.

The highly unusual and eye-catching event was deemed a huge success with shoppers and led to a 1,025% increase in sales of Wildcat in Heathrow Terminal 5 during the first week.
Amy Neville-Eliot, Marketing Manager for Whyte & Mackay Global Travel Retail says: “This December we have created an unashamedly impactful presence with Wildcat’s Temptation Hotel. During such a busy, festive time of the year, our fun and engaging concept aims to break the existing gin category norms.

“Commuters and holiday-makers will be served up geo-targeted social ads inviting them to visit the activation while they’re in the airport. Consumers will also be invited to snap and share selfies in front of the key-shaped infinity mirror in order to be in with a chance to win tickets to Crystal Maze LIVE, London.”

The campaign will continue with the Temptation Hotel running at Heathrow airport into January. There will also be a Wildcat bar at Terminal 1 of Manchester Airport plus a bar at Birmingham Airport, both in collaboration with Dufry.

“Theatrical in its appearance, The Temptation Hotel draws in passing travellers using typical ‘hotelier’ language to engage shoppers as though they are hotel clients – at the same time using tongue-in-cheek pantomime humour to build on the experience,” continues Amy Neville-Eliot.

“Our challenge has been to engage the millennial traveller with something that really catches their eye, makes them smile and intrigues them enough to want to find out more.”

Paul Martin, Liquor Manager UK for World Duty Free commented: “This exclusive launch of Wildcat Gin has really raised the bar for experiential campaigns in this sector. The Temptation Hotel has been a huge success with shoppers and Wildcat is an exciting new launch in the booming and vital gin category.”

Wildcat 1L is now available, priced at £31.99, in World Duty Free stores at select airports across the UK.

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