Marketing

Mood Board: A branded bodega grows in Brooklyn

A look at Coors Light’s plastic-free pop-up.
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Dianna "Mick" McDougall

less than 3 min read

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New Yorkers put up with a lot—horrible weather, the Knicks, and the sneaking suspicion that we actually are living at the center of the universe. In exchange, we get the fabled bodega, the corner stores that dot our neighborhoods, fry our bacon and eggs, and give us a sense of community in a town of nearly 8.5 million people.

Taking inspiration from these urban merchants, Coors Light debuted a pop-up bodega earlier this month to celebrate the brand’s latest sustainability initiative—ditching plastic rings on six-packs—by erecting a plastic-free corner store in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

The props: The beer brand went to great lengths to fill the shelves and aisles with all the (faux) goods you’d find in your average convenience store, but with a Coors twist. For example, it hawked Future Flour (“let’s bake a brighter future”) and Coors Light(bulbs). Our favorite? Coorsatelli pasta.

Coors Light's plastic-free pop-up, inside

Dianna "Mick" McDougall

“We were a little over ambitious,” said Teia Meigneux, a senior interactive producer at Droga5, the agency that worked on the pop-up. Roughly 100 products were made for the stunt.

Wouldn’t be complete without: As Meigneux noted, though every bodega has its own quirks, there are a few consistent features that the team had to capture, starting with fluorescent lights, a nonfunctioning ice machine, an ATM (in this case, an ACM, or “Automated Chiller Machine”), and, of course, a stuffed-animal bodega cat. Passersby were treated to scratch-off lottery tickets with the chance of winning a bottle opener, an air freshener, or a tote bag.

the ACM inside of Coors Light's plastic-free pop-up

Dianna "Mick" McDougall

Cork it: To emphasize the brand’s plastic-free ambitions, the market’s shelves and counters were made from a material sourced from brewing waste called “spent grain.” It’s sort of like heavy-duty cardboard, but it’s 100% biodegradable.

a sign from Coors Light's plastic-free pop-up

Dianna "Mick" McDougall

Keep it local: Droga5 turned to local artists to keep the look of the pop-up authentic, recruiting graphic artists who’ve added (often unsung additions) to the tableau of the city.

  • Peter Paid drew the signs hung in-store and posted around the neighborhood.
  • Noble Signs created the awning and designed a number of the products.
  • Dirty Bandits designed the in-store mural.

Free suds? Alas, no. But, guests were given a code that would reimburse them for a 12-pack of Coors Light bought at their own local bodega, keeping $$ within the community.

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Marketing Brew informs marketing pros of the latest on brand strategy, social media, and ad tech via our weekday newsletter, virtual events, marketing conferences, and digital guides.