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  1. IRN-BRU David Rizzuto, International Design, ACM2009

  2. What is Irn-Bru? • “Irn-Bru” - Scotland’s other national drink. • Irn-Bru is a brand which maintains their dominance in the soft drink market. • How? • By marketing itself as a national icon in Scotland.

  3. BrandObjective • Its objective to market itself as a Scottish icon as served well since Scottish people tend to favour local symbols as opposed to global ones.

  4. Brand Identity - Humour • Irn-Bru embraces its Scottish heritage…by poking fun at it. • This ad caused some controversy at first, but complaints were dismissed because the advertisement was in “good-nature”. • Instead of negative feedback, this stunt caused increased awareness of the brand.

  5. Controversy – When Humour Fails • Sometimes though, Irn-Bru’s advertisement has caused some real upset. • “Parody of 1950’s commercial”- claimed to have offended transgender people. • Does risky advertising carry negative ramifications should it backfire?

  6. Re-branding for overseas markets • Irn-Bru began to sell its brand in Russia, totally changing its advertising to suit cultural aesthetics in the country. • Humour was used to promote their product in Russia, which was met with a positive reception; conveying a positive impression to consumers being advertised by a foreign brand. •

  7. Incorporating Humour into Taglines • Connecting a funny tagline can be used to identify your target audience. Irn-Bru used this advert to express how Scottish people use their sense of humour to retain their lives during their up’s and down’s. • “Scottish sprit and attitude inspired our new campaign which offers some light relief and how Irn-Bru gets you through” – Head of Marketing Adrian Troy. • An attempt to connect national identity to product – connecting your product and your personality to get you through a situation. The advertising strategy Irn-Bru created included: • Target audience - > Scottish people; • Evoke feelings to the audience and connect them to your product - > the ‘typical’ Scottish reaction to an embarrassing situation, and how the product helps, hence “Irn-Bru gets you through”.

  8. Conclusion • Irn-Bru’s success is determined by simple attributes that help connect a brand with a young audience. • Key attributes are: • Create a brand that appeals to an audience as to who have an ‘identity’, such as national pride, etc. • Don’t take yourself seriously– appealing to a wide audience. Make it ‘fun’ and ‘energetic’ – people appreciate your brand if you try something humorous or clever. • Take risks, but know when to draw the line - the intention to advertise your brand is to amuse – not to offend. • Create a tagline that evokes a connection to the audience’s identity and the product.

  9. References • Clarke, C (2012) “Irn-Bru unveils new ads and new slogan: 'Irn-Bru gets you through‘”, The Drum Modern Media & Marketing website, <> • Stone, M.A. (2003) Case 1: Irn-Bru builds up A.G. Barr sales with fizz in Russia, viewed 6th March 2013 <> • Riley, A. (2011) Secrets of the Superbrands – Food, BBC Television, viewed 9th March 2013 <> • Brottland, B. (2008) “Top 11 Marketing Taglines of 2008”, Resource Nation website, viewed 11th April 2013 <>

  10. Questions • Q1: Do you think it is important that the target audience’s identity reflects your brand and design? • Q2: Are taglines necessary, or should a product's design be enough to grab attention? • Q3: Should it be important for designers to think of ideas do not carry negative connotations when creating a brand, or are these complaints nothing more than overanalyses?