“A remarkable campaign that delivered the Holy Grail for FMCG businesses, listings and sales.”

Lucy Bearman, Head of Marketing, Wines, Pernod Ricard UK

In a crowded wine market, how do you get a relatively unknown Argentine Malbec to stand out and resonate amongst 25-35 year-old London men? That was the challenge to Atomic from Graffigna, one of Argentina’s top wineries.

Our research revealed a little known fact about Malbec: it’s the best wine for red meat. Period. It’s due to a chemical bonding between tannin (a compound found in red wine which is naturally high in Malbec) and fat in red meat. Atomic then analysed the area of wine and meat. We also delved into food trends, competitor behaviour, social conversations and audience segmentation data that revealed:

  • Our target audience eats out more than in
  • 65% of online conversation around ‘red meat’ and ‘wine’ is by men and Malbec rarely features
  • A third of Brits (34%) rate ‘steak and chips’ as their favourite meal (YouGov 2014)
  • London is experiencing a resurgence in premium steak houses

The Idea

When a brand wants to raise awareness in order to support its retail listings, the starting point is often around how PR can support customer marketing. But what if we could build the brand in the on-trade by targeting steak restaurants and use that power to leverage greater influence with retail buyers?

Enter #MeatyMalbec, our campaign that connected Graffigna with restaurants and in doing so, engaged the target audience and generated real business impact.

To get the brand into restaurants we needed a vehicle. We found that steak barely registers in food/restaurant awards. So we created London’s first steak awards and launched the inaugural Graffigna London Steak Awards.

We recruited four judges, all influential in food, wine and lifestyle with a strong male following. Two double page spreads in Foodism brought the campaign to life. A feature on the science was also developed and sold into MailOnline, resulting in a full-length feature.

The 100 public nominations became a shortlist of ten and then the public voted for the final four. Our judges had the tough job of visiting the restaurants and broadcasting the tastings across social media and blogs. Finally, the inaugural winner was announced – Hawksmoor.

When Graffigna asked Atomic to get its award winning Malbec wines noticed, it was looking for a jump in awareness. What it got was an integrated campaign which drove sales, listings, data, engagement and reach and shortlists for numerous awards.

#MeatyMalbec delivered