Male Millennial & B2B Opps: Stoli combats PR struggles with new campaign (Score 56)

Update: Stoli is currently undergoing a rapid rebrand due to boycotts caused by negative associations with Russia. Though the company has no ties to the country, its full name is Stolichnaya, creating room for confusion. Many companies have experienced similar struggles due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine earlier this year. Stoli will continue focusing on how its look and feel evolves. This rebrand will lead to strategy shifts that could result in higher spend and/or agency appointments.

To further combat these obstacles, Stoli launched a global educational communications and PR campaign in several regions including the US. It's also focused on open dialogue, answering questions from consumers on its social media platforms and sharing its history of opposition to the Russian regime on its website. Stoli also launched a limited-edition bottle of vodka, the proceeds of which are being donated to World Central Kitchen. The company also debuted Cocktails for Ukraine, which encourages bars and restaurants to donate $1 to the same non-profit for every Stoli cocktail sold. 

The company primarily targets millennials with a male skew, but the Cocktails for Ukraine effort targets businesses as well. Read more details about its recent (and increasing) digital ad spend in the article below.

Agency & martech readers - LandersMadden handles corporate PR and supports individual brand business PR as needed; it also provides strategy, execution, media relations, content creation and social services. Exposure handles consumer PR, and Coyne provides additional PR assistance. Beyond PR, Stoli may need additional creative and/or media assistance. It was already vulnerable to review due to its recent appointment of Curiosity, which is now the social AOR for Stoli's Villa One, Cenote and Se Busca brands (more below). Horizon Media NY is the company's media AOR.

We originally published the article below on May 17:

Stoli Group recently named Curiosity as the social media AOR for its agave brands: Villa One, Cenote and Se Busca. The company is ready to "position its premium spirits to a sophisticated global consumer, through social experiences built from culture," per Curiosity partner and chief development officer Ashley Walters. Now, the agency will develop and execute separate social media and influencer strategies and campaigns for each brand, focusing on highlighting each one's individual qualities and targets. For example, one activation for Se Busca will involve all-female bartenders. Sellers should get in touch soon to secure last-minute ad dollars from soon-to-launch work, and agencies should keep Stoli on their radars in case it conducts additional reviews.

Pathmatics reports the vodka brand's estimated YTD digital spend of $36.6k has skyrocketed from the roughly $1.6k it had spent by this point last year. In 2021, Stoli ended up spending roughly $72.7k on this channel, up exponentially from the roughly $7.3k it spent in 2020. So far this year, the company has earned around 4.1m digital impressions via Facebook (76%), desktop display (20%) and mobile display (4%) ads. 

Spend shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon, so I urge sellers to get in touch sooner rather than later to secure some of these increasing ad dollars. Stoli's target demographic tends to consist primarily of millennials with a male skew. 

Agency & martech readers - As I briefly mentioned, additional roster shifts could easily follow this one; reach out soon to be top-of-mind. To the best of my knowledge, Horizon Media NY is Stoli's media buying and planning AOR, and the company receives PR assistance from Golin NY.