Stella Artois has launched a new campaign to help local bars and restaurants during the Coronavirus crisis. Using social media, the brand aims to raise funds for small businesses by reminding customers that “there’s always an after” to a crisis. For the push, the brand is gift card-matching. When a customer buys a voucher for a local restaurant, Stella Artois will double the gift card credit for the customer to use after the pandemic subsides. Since the campaign’s launch in early April, over $2.5 million has been raised for local businesses across North America, South America, and Europe. The campaign is currently running on social media and television in several countries around the world, including the UK, France, Brazil, and Peru.
To promote the voucher program, Stella Artois created a video ad that celebrates the brand’s 600-year-old history and everything it’s seen in that time. Showing footage from The Great Depression, World Wars, and the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Belgian brand reminds viewers that humanity always thrives after a crisis ends. Viewers are prompted to think about what restaurants and bars they want to go to after the Coronavirus pandemic, and how they can help out those establishments now. By running a coordinated international campaign, Stella Artois could drive engagement, awareness, and commerce according to a Gartner report on the topic. The campaign is the brand’s latest effort to give back during the crisis, as it has already held a free wedding contest and an Instagram cooking show to raise money for Coronavirus relief efforts.
While times are tough for small restaurants, Stella Artois knows that good times will come again. By helping out restaurants and bars during the pandemic, the brand could build a loyal community of restaurant owners and patrons who find reassurance in the positive messaging.