Here in the US, the wine category is mature and crowded with similar brands at similar price-points telling similar stories. Which is why Pernod Ricard Winemakers asked us to create a new wine brand—one with a disruptively daring personality that could entice new consumers into the category.
Pernod Ricard Winemakers had identified a target market consisting of a new kind of wine drinker: young, adventurous, driven by stories and looking for wines with attitude, not just credentials. They’d be the perfect audience for this California red blend—a wine for which there are no set rules or recipes; only the vision of the wine maker.
Our name, packaging and applications would need to tap into the shared rebellious attitude of drinkers and winemakers. We needed to bring an audacious Californian red to life—one that broke free from tradition and went its own way.
Inspired by the winemaker’s passion and the spirit of our consumers, we named the brand Dead Bolt, which evokes the daring personality of the wine and its drinkers, and suggests the peerless quality that’s only available to life’s risk-takers.
We designed a tattoo-inspired identity that exudes fearless individuality. Our wine label celebrates this with a striking high gloss and a foil-stamped treatment that rises out of a deep matte background—a smart and edgy combination.
To support the brand, we created t-shirts, caps, point-of-sale materials and shipper packaging, all of which emphasize our counterculture tattoo identity.
Dead Bolt sales have exceeded forecasts by 57%. Within just six months, 8000 cases were shipped to eight separate markets. In terms of sales, Dead Bolt is already a top-five red blend wine in Supervalu (Southern California, Nevada and Illinois).
Dead Bolt was so successful early on, that its national launch was moved forward by a full year in order to satisfy frenzied demand.
Frank Polley, VP Marketing, Wines & Champagnes at Pernod Ricard USA says: “Dead Bolt is a brand that stands out head to toe in the red blend category in terms of attitude and appeal.”
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