Late in 2010 Pabst Brewing came to us with a problem. The light beer offering from their iconic Texas brand Lone Star was almost completely ignored by distributors and consumers.
Looking at the packaging, it made sense. Lone Star Light is packaged with the exact same label as Lone Star, with just a slight shift in color from red to blue in the central panel and a small piece of typography reading “light.” Pabst asked for our help in positioning the beer as a stand-alone brand, rather than the wimpy little brother of a beloved Texas staple.
Our solution was to refuse to play the ‘me too’ light beer game. Let’s face it: there’s nothing unique about ‘light.’ Every brand has one. We sought to establish LSL as its own entity: a unique, low-calorie offering from the folks at Lone Star. The name came directly from listening to the superb marketing team working on the brand. They keep conversations clear by referring to the two products as ‘Red’ and ‘Blue.’
Visually, we reclaimed an iconic symbol from the brand’s past. The new label design was an evolution of the popular 1970’s brand signage that was adopted by folks state-wide, like Jerry Jeff Walker. It’s a part of Texas’ history and rich culture, and in utilizing it we tied Blue back to the parent brand without mimicking the current Lone Star red identity.
The package and positioning was a huge hit with the team at Pabst, from marketing heads down to the sales force. It was celebrated by everyone as the first time in years the brand drew a fresh breath of new life.
Alas, it was not meant to be. A shift in leadership brought big changes with the marketing team, and our beloved Blue became a casualty of war. We’re proud of the hard work our team put in on the project, and the resulting work. We’ve posted it here to honor those efforts, toward ‘the one that got away.’
I sure wish this one was still available. What do you think?