Canadian Club Sends Consumers on a Wild Whisky Chase
In 1967, Canadian Club Whisky began hiding cases of its whisky around the world and sponsoring hunts in which consumers competed to find them. In 2009, the brand resurrected its Hide A Case program to challenge consumers to find one of its 43-year-old lost cases. The preliminary competition began May 17 and concluded July 9. Competitors of legal drinking age registered at hideacase.com and each week they were challenged to solve a puzzle, which, if correct earned them 10 points and the right to proceed to the next round of competition. To get through the preliminary round, consumers had to rack up at least 50 points from the six weekly puzzles. Those who did moved to round two.
In the second stage, consumers had to create and post a video illustrating why they should be chosen to join the live expedition to find the case and vie for a chance at winning the $100,000 grand prize. Then, the 30 best videos went up online for popular voting and before a panel of judges in order to narrow the field down to four Americans and four Canadians.
In the final showdown the following April, those eight adventurers headed off into the wild to compete against one another in a series of scavenger hunts and trivia challenges designed to reveal the location of one of the few remaining hidden caches of whisky. The catch is: not even Canadian Club knows if it’s still there, though three executives know where it is supposed to be. Cases have been found at Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Angel Falls in Venezuela, the Swiss Alps, California’s Death Valley and atop a skyscraper in Manhattan. Only 16 of the cases have ever been located, to the brand’s knowledge. If the expedition is unlucky and the case is gone, the winning hunter still gets the prize money. Canadian adventurer and television personality Kevin Brauch will helm the final hunt, wherever it will be.
“This program resurrection is reaffirming the adventurous identity of Canadian Club,” says Michael Cockram, Senior Brand Director at Canadian Club. “We want to get people re-involved in the brand and this hunt helps them get engaged with us in a much deeper way than online or print advertising. We want to get people to chat about our brand again.”