[Dutch PR Awards 2024] The Romans: Don Julio x Amsterdam Dance Event - Tacos, Tequila and Techno

[Dutch PR Awards 2024] The Romans: Don Julio x Amsterdam Dance Event - Tacos, Tequila and Techno

Name Case: Don Julio x Amsterdam Dance Event: Tacos, Tequila and Techno | Submitter: The Romans Amsterdam | Category: PR Driven Campaign

Can you introduce The Romans Amsterdam?

The Romans was founded in the UK in 2015 and came to the Netherlands in 2023.

We were born of being bored of boring PR. We use creativity and our obsession with culture to connect diverse audiences with ideas they care about. We earn attention by being genuinely relevant – staying at the forefront of niche and mainstream trends to help our clients show up for communities authentically.

The Romans has always had a singular business strategy: seek out the very best talent and develop them to be individually exceptional.

And, since we opened our latest office in Amsterdam in 2023, we’ve been hiring exceptional individuals from the Dutch market to do exceptional things.

Together, we’ve won projects and retainers for some of the world’s best-known brands and products, including Tony’s Chocolonely, Heineken, Upfield, Veloretti and Inner Circle.

Our founding client was the global heavy-weight, Diageo and we’re hugely proud of the first project we delivered together with them for Don Julio.. We’ve created and executed major consumer campaigns globally and locally, for brands like Don Julio and Blue Band. Secured coverage for clients in every Dutch consumer title. And had a ridiculous amount of fun.

Globally minded, locally connected. Culturally ravenous, creatively ambitious. We are The Romans Amsterdam

Who was the client?

Culture and Entertainment Marketing Lead at Diageo. Brand: Don Julio.

Briefing and objectives

Don Julio is the exclusive drink of the night-time. Synonymous with parties and a rider requisite of some of the world’s most iconic DJs. An elevated, beautifully crafted party-starter.

For Northern Europe, our client was tasked to make an impact, through music and nightlife, for The Netherlands. No surprises, they’d landed on Amsterdam Dance Event – the country’s biggest music event, whose soundwaves ripple through electronic music circles across the planet. The challenge?

While the on-trade team had forged relationships with bars and venues around town to build Don Julio’s visibility – there was no earned value in the activations; they were simply (brilliant) brand take-overs. The question was, how could we piggy-back on the brand’s presence across Amsterdam’s biggest music event in a way that would not only authentically solidify Don Julio’s place on the dancefloor among DJs, but also position it and its classic serve – The Don Julio Paloma – as THE drink of ADE for partygoers?

Our number one goal was to get Don Julio 1942, the tequila portfolio’s most luxury product, into the hands of music industry giants. This wasn’t about staged product shots on the Instagram feeds of traditional social media influencers. This was about solidifying the brand’s place in the heart of the music scene – among people of genuine influence in the music industry - as the drink for DJs to enjoy with their friends.

Our secondary goal was to secure earned lifestyle media coverage for Don Julio Blanco and the Don Julio Paloma, to position it to party-goers as the drink of the event. One they needed to be seen on the scene with, by visiting partner venues and ordering it at bars across the weeklong party.

Insights and strategy

With no event sponsorship deal and; a raft of brands and talent creating a noisy landscape over the ADE week; this was going to take connections and collaboration. We needed to punch above our weight to cut-through the noise. To borrow reach and relevance from well-known names and to create a simple message that would authentically and uniquely position Don Julio on the dancefloor.

Our client’s key brand insight was that Don Julio had organically become an essential on many global artists’ riders. Together, we wanted to amplify this fact to elevate the brand as the spirit of the music scene. Not only to build the brand’s appeal within the music industry. But also among music-lovers, inspired by their favourite artists to get the party started in style.

For 1942, it was about getting this iconic product into the hands of ADE’s biggest names. This had to be authentic, and organically sharable. No mean feat, with artists enjoying the royal treatment across the event. Given the product’s super premium price, we already had a desirable offer. But to really stand out, we needed to create an elevated, premium, personalised gifting experience.

To reach consumers, we needed to work with a partner to help earn media attention.
Enter: Charlotte de Witte. A lifelong Don Julio fan who, through her label, KNTXT, was building her personal brand from techno titan to lifestyle personality. Working with our clients and the artist’s management team we forged a mutually beneficial relationship, allowing us to create a meaningful story to generate media interest; and her to extend her ADE offering in a never-been-done before way.

The case

With an ambition from the brilliant and trusting client team to go big and make a splash on the scene, together, we took the brief seriously, but made the work unbelievably fun.

For Don Julio 1942, it was important to make connections between the brand and the heavyweights of the global music industry by personally gifting bottles. In partnership with the Don Julio team and using our formidable networks in the music scene, we were able to line up gifting for 100 of the most iconic acts from the event. Not only did we place bottles and complement cards in the hotel rooms of ADE’s iconic acts, we also engraved bottles for our top targets. Using lyrics from their biggest tracks, we turned 1942 bottles into love letters to techno music.

Beyond Don Julio 1942 seeding, we gave ourselves the humble ambition to make the Don Julio Blanco Paloma THE drink of the event. How? By partnering with tequila loving techno titan, Charlotte de Witte, to take-over Amsterdam Theatre with ‘Tacos, Tequila and Techno’ – a unique, day-to-night concept that blended lifestyle, music and modern Mexican culture. A coolly kitsch range of high quality, sustainable co-branded T-shirts, was created and sold via the event’s on-sight shop. We also launched a one-of-a-kind taco stand, serving up Don Julio infused ceviche tacos and other tasty treats.

With media, influencers and thousands of party-goers through the door – to say Don Julio was unmissable at one of ADE’s coolest parties would be an understatement. Greeting our VIP guests at the Don Julio Paloma station, our client was able to make inroads with some of Amsterdam’s lifestyle media elite. But we didn’t just stand out at the event, we also secured top notch messaging in every consumer lifestyle title in The Netherlands and a raft of influencer content and UGC.

And we didn’t stop there. Given the brand team had forged such brilliant partnerships with the on-trade, we amplified the Don Julio Paloma stations through a suite of tactics including setting up an exclusive interview with a top tier media outlet and The Magician at Chin Chin Club over a Paloma. And we served up Paloma tastings for media, influencers, and artists at The Andaz – a key networking hub for the music industry.



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