Thirst’s campaign for The Botanist sheds a new light on its premium gin

The botanist Islay Dry is no ordinary gin. It is made by Bruichladdich Distillery on the island of Islay in the Inner Hebrides from 22 sustainably hand-picked botanicals between March and October by two full-time collectors. The name was inspired by the two local botanists who helped develop the gin’s recipe along with former master distiller Jim McEwan.

To communicate the unique qualities of their product, the brand has partnered with Glasgow-based creative agency Thirst to create a full 360° awareness campaign. Titled Look Further, it celebrates the brand’s unique taste, heritage and purpose.

The campaign builds on existing work celebrating the origins of Islay gin and a deeper understanding of the community, environment and ingredients behind it.

Use of CGI

Developed in collaboration with independent creative director Hugh Carswell, the centerpiece of the new ads takes the botanist’s iconic tactile glass bottle – which bears the names of the botanicals it contains in Latin embossed – and transforms it into a CGI-rendered mirrored glass.

The visual effects were realized by Framestore, the Oscar-winning team behind Hollywood films like Gravity, Blade Runner 2049, No Time To Die and Top Gun: Maverick.

Thirst has built a full 360° global awareness campaign around the lens concept to be rolled out nationally and internationally in the UK, US, Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand.

Matt Burns, creative director at Thirst, explains that the new multichannel campaign leverages the three pillars that define The Botanist – taste, origin and purpose. Depictions of each are viewed through the lens of the campaign across a range of film, online and OOH assets.

“The team behind the brand wanted to symbolize seeing the world through the eyes of the botanist,” explains Burns. “Using the bottle as a prism through which to look at the product, the process and the world – as the brand sees it – was a unique way to do that.”

“We aim to convey the brand’s always upbeat and progressive direction through an extremely rigorous messaging strategy and an artistic direction that invites discovery and rewards the senses,” he continues.

“We wanted to combine the brand’s strategy with creative expression, which we have defined as The Botanist’s three key cornerstones – exceptional gin, idiosyncratic Islay origins and community-driven purpose – that provide a focused yet flexible roadmap for campaign execution formed at every touchpoint, in line with brand priorities.”

The result is a complete portfolio of touchpoints spanning film, photography, advertising, social, retail and commerce that sets the gin apart and reflects its unique heritage, origins and approach. “It gives consumers around the world an immediate sense of what The Botanist is about, even before they open the bottle,” says Matt.

Gareth Brown, Global Marketing Director at Bruichladdich Distillery adds: “There is a story behind the brand that we wanted to bring to a new audience. And by taking our iconic bottle as a starting point, we invite consumers to join us and see the world through The Botanist’s eyes. This campaign is unique to the brand and we are excited to share it with the world.”

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