Kokanee bows on-air Glacier Girl Contest

Take the archetype of hot girls promoting beer, throw in a contest and top it all off with a reality TV concept and you've got a recipe for innovative new marketing territory. When the hit TV show Smallville scooped up one of Kokanee's three Glacier Girls, Erica Durance, the beer company was left one girl short of a trio. Enter Grip creative partner Rich Pryce-Jones' stroke of genius: recruit the replacement via a contest, and broadcast a reality-TV inspired microseries chronicling the progress.

Take the archetype of hot girls promoting beer, throw in a contest and top it all off with a reality TV concept and you’ve got a recipe for innovative new marketing territory. When the hit TV show Smallville scooped up one of Kokanee’s three Glacier Girls, Erica Durance, the beer company was left one girl short of a trio. Enter Grip creative partner Rich Pryce-Jones’ stroke of genius: recruit the replacement via a contest, and broadcast a reality-TV inspired microseries chronicling the progress.

Kokanee national marketing manager Andrew Sneyd knew the idea was gold, so he worked quickly to recruit the right partners for the project. He decided to team up with CityTV Vancouver to broadcast the five 90-second ‘episodes.’ ‘CityTV is a great partner in that they enjoy having fun, and they’re open to doing things differently,’ says Sneyd. The episodes air five consecutive weeks beginning February 18 during Jimmy Kimmel Live and ‘Guys Night In’ movies in Vancouver, and during the Simpsons and The Tonight Show on A-Channel in Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg. Kokanee also recruited radio partners to promote the hunt for the next Glacier Girl.

The campaign kicked off at the end of November with recruitment calls and events. Kokanee’s search spanned province-wide – they auditioned 120 aspiring Glacier Girls in bars like Gotcha’s in Kelowna and Buffalo Bill’s in Whistler. The ideal Glacier Girl lives the ‘BC mountain lifestyle.’ Sneyd hopes the campaign will cement Kokanee’s place as the beer out west. ‘We want to be part of the social fabric of BC and western Canada,’ he explains. The judges’ panel included Olympian and Kokanee stunt woman Tami Bradley, who also acted as a spokesperson for the contest. The actual tasks included ‘rope the Sasquatch’ and Sasquatch wresting, as well as acting – a line read with the ranger and a final plea to the judges.

February 25′s episode reveals the new Glacier Girl. The remaining three episodes will follow her progress starring in Kokanee’s next TV spot.