Courvoisier launches ‘Toast of Paris Since 1889’

25th September, 2015 by Kristiane Sherry

Courvoisier has unveiled its major Toast of Paris Since 1889 campaign, comprising a packaging redesign, a global marketing push, experience-led consumer events and digital engagement initiatives.

Courvoisier's Toast of Paris Since 1889 campaign encompasses a pack redesign, immersive consumer events and a 360 marketing approach

Courvoisier’s Toast of Paris Since 1889 campaign encompasses a pack redesign, immersive consumer events and a 360 marketing approach

Aligning the brand with its Parisian history, Toast of Paris Since 1889 recalls the Paris Golden Age, or La Belle Époque, an era from 1870-1910. Described as “a period of innovation, optimism and creative exuberance”, the initiative recalls Courvoisier’s role at that time, when it won gold medals at the 1900 Exposition Universelle and was served to celebrate the opening of the Eiffel Tower.

The Spirits Business attended the official launch event at The Eiffel Tower this week, which recalled La Belle Époque with new signature serves, part of the campaign, inspired by the drinks first served at the landmark’s opening.

“We are embarking on a new campaign which will connect Courvoisier with a broad range of global luxury consumers,” said Francois Bazini, VP international marketing, Beam Suntory.

“The brand transformation celebrates Courvoisier’s unique Parisian heritage and luxury credentials in an innovative, modern way and represents a step-change in our plans to grow Courvoisier’s market share globally. We are already delivering a strong performance across many key markets and expect the new campaign to accelerate this growth.

“With our renewed focus on premiumisation, we need to recognise that global luxury consumers have converging aspirations for luxury. They reject brands that pretend to be something they’re not, or simply claim to be ‘old.’ They expect modern brands with values, history and provenance. We are addressing these expectations by demonstrating that Courvoisier is a delicately crafted, authentic brand with an incredibly rich, very real history.”

“Why is the Paris Golden Age relevant to today’s consumers? Everything that people around the world know and love about Paris, the architecture, the music, the art, the romance, the Eiffel Tower itself – it’s all from this Golden Age. Even if they don’t know it because they are not art historians, what they love about Paris was all born during La Belle Époque. This is why this time is so relevant to consumers around the world today and why Courvoisier is right to claim that heritage.”

The official Toast of Paris launch event took place at the Eiffel Tower this week

The official Toast of Paris launch event took place at the Eiffel Tower this week

As part of the launch, in June Courvoisier announced it had rebranded its entire collection with an Eiffel Tower-inspired design. The purple and gold packaging was developed to represent its roots, and “elevate” the range above other Cognac brands.

In addition, the brand has announced the Courvoisier Paris Golden Age Tour, a bespoke, luxury tour through Paris, which takes visitors on a journey to experience one of the most extravagant and innovative eras in history.

UK as a “focus market”

In the UK, activations will take place across both the on- and off- trade. Beam Suntory says the market “remains a focus market for Courvoisier” and the brand has a 63% volume share, up +7.4% in the past 12 months verses a category increase of +5.7%, according to Nielsen.

In the on-trade, a primary focus will be to communicate new signature serves, Midnight in Paris and the Courvoisier Champagne Cocktail. 300 branded on-trade kits, including coupette glasses, strut cards and tent cards, will promote the Parisian Sidecar Serve.

The brand will have a presence in grocer Christmas gift guides to “maximise the Christmas sales opportunity”.

Cash and carry stores will offer packs with a pair of coupette glasses and a bottle of Courvoisier VSOP to highlight the Champagne Cocktail serve. In addition, 10,000 Courvoisier VS gift cartons will be exclusively available at Costco.

Chris Anderson, Maxxium UK’s marketing controller for luxury brands, commented: “Courvoisier’s transformation comes at a pivotal time as we begin to see a positive shift in the cognac category. As the leading cognac brand in the UK, Courvoisier is taking a clear, unified stance with its new campaign to communicate its heritage and premium position in the market.

“To support the launch, we are providing our customers with the tools they need at this important time of year when cognac, and particularly Courvoisier®, is top of mind with consumers as they prepare to celebrate Christmas and retailers look to maximise sales during this key sales opportunity.”

In July, Maxxium UK released two limited edition Courvoisier Cognac gift packs featuring the brand’s XO and Intiale Extra expressions and bespoke fragrances.

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