Quirky gin brand Hendrick’s has sponsored a series of odd talks, The Hendrick’s Lecture Series, in collaboration with unconventional East London events-collective and curiosity shop The Last Tuesday Society.
The series kicked off in May with author DJ Taylor talking about his new bookabout 1920s british Jazz – Bright Young Things. Next up is ‘William Bankes: The Exiled Collector with Anne Sebba’: in which the Egyptologist talks you through his travels along the Nile, with help from various artefacts, manuscripts and drawings.
Other events include an ecletic mix of literature, craft and general interest, including the launch of John Waters’ new novel, Catharine Arnold on her new novel about London’s vices, and Mike Lousada on tantric sex. Interested parties can buy tickets through the Last Tuesday Society site.
The lectures are also available as podcasts from the Hendrick’s website.
This is not the only partnership between the two, as the gin brand also backs the Hendricks Quarterly Seance at the same venue.
With so many premium alcohol spirit brands trying to position themselves as contemporary and cool, Hendricks takes what is seemingly the totally opposite approach. It positions itself as a quintessentially quirky English brand (despite being brewed in Scotland) and its humorous marcoms are all about differentiation.
With its ‘A Most Unusual Gin’ tagline’ it tries to taste, look and act differently from other premium competitiors like Tanqueray and Bombay Sapphire.
‘As much as we taste different, it was as important for us to look different,’ says Hendrick’s Gin Global Brand Manager, Nick Williamson (pictured). ‘Some super premium brands are very serious about their packaging and sexy bottles, so we deliberately have a dumpy, old-fashioned medicinal style bottle that stands out on the shelf. We look differently and that translates into us behaving differently as a brand. We’re not cool, stylish and sexy. Rather, we’re happy to have a bit of fun and put a smile on people’s faces.’
Of course the brand doesn’t have the huge marketing money that backs its Diageo and Pernod competitors, such aside from limited press ads typically in odd and thoughtful titles, Hendricks relies on eclectic events and odd sponsorships as the cornerstone of its marketing.
Differentiation is everything for a brand that seems to surround itself with unorthodox Victoriana – from croquet days to taxidermy, steam trains and the sound of gramophones. Its collaboration with the Last Tuesday Society fits perfectly with this strategy.