Featured image for Ukrainian Creative Agency BBDO Redesigns Hike Beer

Ukrainian Creative Agency BBDO Redesigns Hike Beer

by Casha Doemland on 02/25/2019 | 3 Minute Read

Obolon, one of Ukraine's largest breweries, introduced hike premium beer in the early 2000s as a beer for youngsters longing for freedom—hence their slogan, “freedom your way.”

While the flavor over the years has remained the same, the design has not, with BBDO Ukraine producing the second redesign. The first redesign kept the signature orange color and logo shape but created variations in the typography. BBDO opted to wipe the slate clean and start from scratch.

With a solid orange and clean, block letters in black, the can cleverly combine the "i" and "k" for the logo along with their new slogan, "dream it, do it, hike it." To discover why BBDO made such a drastic change to the design, we interviewed creative director, Denis Keleberdenko.

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As it was a redesign, what did the original packaging look like? How was it outdated?

Since its launch, the brand has updated incrementally, never changing suddenly. The main recognizable elements were the orange label on a green bottle with a shield emblazoned with the letter "H."

On the right, you have the 2018 brand. On the left, the branding from 2008 and 2011.  

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What was one of the biggest goals you set out to achieve with the redesign and how did you accomplish it?

The main issue for the brand was that its young audience — for whom the brand was created in the first place — had matured and switched to more expensive beers. The new,  younger audience does not consider regular beer cool. They prefer cider, hard lemonade, craft beer and wine. Naturally, the mass-produced beer had begun to lose market share to more fashionable alcoholic drinks and cocktails.

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We needed to make the beer attractive and fashionable again. Immediately, we set out to make the design different from every other beer brand. We got rid of all the industry cliches and actively avoided using stereotypical images of barley, barrels, hops, lettering and craft illustrations. We basically wanted to make the beer look like anything but beer.

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Why did you opt for a minimalistic design?

At the core of the minimalism is the observation of our younger audience’s fashion and communication style. They don’t wear t-shirts because they’re some kind of beautiful decoration. Clothes are more of a personal manifesto and a signal to those around them. They have very little time to dive into long stories or note the fine details of a photo. They communicate online using abbreviations, emojis and hashtags and we wanted to make the package convey our brand without excess or decoration.

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How did you revamp hike's brand story through the packaging?

By getting rid of the stereotypical beer category symbols, we declared that beer could be perceived without the traditional associations connected to its consumption. This was great for us because the younger audience doesn’t always view those associations positively.

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