2015 saw the Rugby World Cup return to the UK and with hopes high for the home nations, hopes were also high in the drinks trade that the tournament would bring a welcome boost to sales. As a worldwide partner of Rugby World Cup 2015, Heineken was committed to making the most of its investment, tasking us to create a trade communications campaign that would help Heineken and its customers become the big winners of the tournament.


The campaign was targeted to reach both the on-trade and off-trade, and was split into three phases over the course of five months – raising awareness, driving anticipation and maintaining momentum – with media relations, media planning, event management and social media tactics employed throughout.

To get the trade engaged with RWC2015 and keep the Heineken brand front of customers’ minds from launch until the end of the tournament, our strategy was to highlight the significant commercial opportunity that RWC2015 presented for Heineken customers in both the on-trade and off-trade and offer expert advice to help retailers and publicans about how to drive incremental sales during the biggest sporting event of the year.


The key messages coming through in trade media coverage before the tournament began were the opportunity the tournament provided to retailers and publicans, and how Heineken was the brand at the heart of the action. The campaign delivered a number of in-depth hero articles in key publications and the post-tournament coverage demonstrated that the commercial opportunity had been realised for many customers, working together with Heineken.