The LCBO shows its soul

The retailer is promoting its whisky selection with a 40-page magazine and contest for budding musicians.

LCBO is showing some soul with its new online whisky promo and ad campaign.

The liquor store’s Show Us Your Whisky Soul Music Video Competition asks musicians across Ontario to write songs and shoot videos with a whisky theme.

To promote the contest and its whisky selection at its 615 stores, the LCBO also printed 800,000 copies of a 40-page whisky magazine that’s being delivered as an insert in the Toronto Sun, Toronto Star, Ottawa Citizen and dozens of local newspapers across the province. The magazine includes music recommendations, tying in the theme of the contest, Tricia Gadsden, marketing manager, LCBO, tells MiC.

‘We think [music and whisky] are like soulmates,’ she says. ‘The distillers that make whisky, they’ve got a lot of heart and soul and they put a lot into creating whisky, and we don’t see any difference between that and making music. Music with soul has character, complexity, texture, and the same can be said of whisky.’

There are also radio ads airing into November through the length of the promotion on Q107, CHUM FM and a selection of other stations throughout Ontario. Online, the LCBO is running Facebook ads targeted at Ontarians over 35 years old, and online banners on independent music sites. There are also wild posters throughout Toronto.

GJP handled the media buy, Oxygen Design Agency did the creative and Henderson Bas was the digital agency. All are based in Toronto.

For the contest, the liquor store has a microsite running.

To enter the contest, musicians have to write music to accompany lyrics the LCBO provides and then shoot a video of themselves playing the song and upload it to the Whisky Soul microsite.

The public can vote online from Oct. 18 to Nov. 12 to choose the finalists, and five judges will chose the winner on Nov. 18. The winner receives a two-day recording session with a music producer, a meeting with an industry publicist and professional photo shoot.