Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

The Good Corona: Find out how this brand inspired consumers to make a positive change! [Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]

November 27, 2020

Plastic pollution is one of the most pressing environmental issues worldwide.

As stated on American television network National Geographic’s website, about 8 million tons of plastic waste goes into the world’s oceans every year.

That’s equivalent to 2 Empire State Buildings dropped into our oceans every month!

Data also shows that in 1950 to 2015, plastic production increased exponentially from 2.3 million tons to 448 million tons. Production is still expected to double in measure by 2050.

Terrifying, right?

Imagine all the negative impacts it has on the environment and wildlife!

In order to help lessen the problem of plastic waste, this beer brand set up a campaign that not only promotes its products, but also encourages people to do their part in making the world a better place to live in.

Corona is a pale lager beer brand produced by Mexican brewery Cervecería Modelo. It is commonly served with a lime or lemon wedge in the neck of its bottle to add to its character, flavor, and refreshment.

Corona is one of the leading beer brands worldwide and establishes itself as a brand that celebrates fun and memorable moments outdoors.

Using its tagline, “This is living,” it invites consumers to take a pause, relax, and enjoy life’s treasures every once in a while.

Enjoying the Simple Pleasures of Life… With a Cause

During the summer of 2019 (summer = Corona’s biggest selling period every year), the brand turned its attention to “protecting paradise.”

In light of the 2016 World Economic Forum data that showed about 8 million tons of plastic waste go into the world’s oceans every year, Corona decided to highlight the issue by creating a campaign that would encourage consumers in selected countries to be part of the solution.

The brand called it…

The “Pay With Plastic” Campaign!

Corona partnered with environmental organization Parley for the Oceans (Parley) and enlisted the service of advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy to launch the campaign as part of the 2019 World Oceans Week.

The campaign aims to interact with consumers who are “looking for ways to make changes that benefit the environment while engaging with brands that share their values,” and took place in Mexico, Brazil, Spain, Italy, and Colombia.

In order to achieve this objective, Corona, Parley, and Wieden+Kennedy’s campaign representatives created geo-targeted digital assets that would direct people to protectparadise.com/paywithplasticwhere, an interactive map that displayed nearest locations for people to exchange plastic for Corona beers.

Posters were put up around cities in the selected countries to further promote the activation of Corona’s campaign.

The campaign team also set up Corona recycling machines that accepted plastic bottles as a form of payment for beers. For every three plastic bottles dropped into the machine, it would dispense one bottle of Corona beer.

Retailers and bars that participated in the campaign also accepted plastic wastes in exchange for Corona beers.

Aside from that, Corona designed a limited edition bottle that is made of upcycled materials. For every six-pack of this bottle sold, Corona and Parley would clean up one square meter at a local beach in Mexico, Canada, UK, Italy, Spain, and Brazil.

It’s not just them!

Consumers could also participate in the clean up activities by signing up on Corona and Parley’s partnership website, protectparadise.com.

As the campaign continued to run its course, 110 more countries signed up for the initiative.

Was Corona’s “Pay With Plastic” Campaign Effective?

The “Pay With Plastic” Campaign is still ongoing.

Since its launch in 2019, Corona and Parley have already worked with over 25,000 volunteers and completed 537 beach clean-ups in more than 23 countries.

So far, a total of 3 million square meters of beach have been cleaned. That’s almost five times the size of Disneyland, California!

The “Pay With Plastic” Campaign is not just a mere guerrilla marketing tactic by Corona to raise brand awareness and increase sales. It is also a global movement that combines a cause-driven initiative with a fun and effective approach.

According to Corona’s Brand Director Evan Ellman, when the brand partnered with Parley for the campaign, its goal was to raise awareness of the marine issue by focusing on how plastic pollution is threatening even the world’s most remote paradises.

When consumers asked how they could help, Corona gave them a variety of ways to be part of the movement.

In Ellman’s words:

“Everything―from attending a clean-up to buying Corona’s products. It all helps protect paradise.”

By declaring “war on plastic wastes” and engaging with thousands of consumers, Corona and Parley were able to dedicate their summer campaign for a good cause.

Associate your brand with a good cause too!

It doesn’t have to be as big as the “Pay With Plastic” Campaign; it can be just donating a percentage of your profit to a local charity, a simple community clean-up, or a tree planting activity within your brand’s location―anything that your marketing budget allows.

Go beyond just promoting your products for profit. Leave a good impression on your target market as well by establishing your brand as a “brand that cares.”

Besides, who wouldn’t want to buy from a brand that is responsible enough to care for Mother Earth?

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.

Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers, and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.

Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.

This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.

It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing is inexpensive.

The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.

Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.

This is every business’ or brand’s dream!

Every Friday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.

Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.

Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Friday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla!


Kyle Yu
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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