Smirnoff partners with Amazon for YouTube channel

Diageo is partnering with Amazon to launch a Smirnoff-branded YouTube channel for fans to purchase ‘party items’ directly from featured videos.

Smirnoff looks to encourage people to share their own ideas on how to be inventive in drink and nightlife choices with the launch of a social commerce YouTube channel.

The channel launches at the end of the month and is the focal point of the vodka’s brand’s ‘Yours for the Making’ global campaign, which launched in Western Europe last week.

It uses YouTube’s Annotation feature and will allow viewers to click on the different items shown in the videos to buy them from a branded ‘Nightlife Experiences’ hub on Amazon. Users will be able to purchase several products including Smirnoff vodka variants and party accessories.

The videos will showcase ideas from people who use the #YoursForTheMaking hashtag to submit their own drink and nightlife suggestions. Each video will document how an idea has been realised and will be curated by a team of influential individuals in the UK music scene such as famous DJs and night-club owners.

Additionally, Smirnoff will pick the best idea and take it on a tour of Britain, Ireland and Germany through a series of experiential events at the start of 2013.

The launch of the YouTube channel marks a strategic shift for Smirnoff’ to focus more on content-led marketing and less on experiential events, which have formed of a cornerstone of its brand building activity since 2010. As a result, it is scrapping its multimillion experiential ‘Nightlife Exchange Project’.

Speaking to Marketing Week Emma Sherwood-Smith, marketing manager for Smirnoff Western Europe, says earlier ‘Nightlife’ activations have been “really successful” for the brand, but adds that “unless fans were at the event, they never really felt involved.”

She adds: “We want everyone to feel involved with our latest campaign the campaign is really about content and how we’re using it to tap into social networks like YouTube and Twitter where people are naturally are online rather than trying to pull them somewhere outside of their existing behaviours.”

The social media push is the latest phase of Smirnoff’s ‘Nightlife Experiences’ global campaign and will be supported by a TV spot.

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