Jumping on current trends and events is a key tactic for any good marketing team, though being strategic about the ones you choose is also pretty essential.
Basically, that’s the exact opposite of what Bristol Dry Gin pulled off with the launch of their new 75% proof vodka.
It’s name? ‘Novichok Edition’ of course.
All in the same week that Amesbury local Dawn Sturgess died from exposure to the nerve agent, whilst her partner remains in hospital after also being poisoned with several areas of Wiltshire are on lock-down as authorities attempt to trace the source of the Novichok.
The West Country distillery announced the new range on 7 July, Sturgess had fallen ill on 30 June, gaining huge worldwide media attention before she sadly died on 8 July.
Many Facebook users have expressed their anger at the marketing plot, citing it as poor taste and insensitive towards the family of Dawn Sturgess.
The company directors have apologised to the families of Sturgess and Rowley, however they have no plans to backtrack on the branding.
In a statement published in the Bristol Post, the company said:
“Novichok Edition has been in development for some time, and was only named and released after the Skripals had recovered. It was intended to lighten the mood and ease tensions, not to cause offence, and reaction has been overwhelming positive.
We sincerely apologise if any offence was caused, especially to the families of Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley, and understand the timing of the release of this product may have lacked sensitivity. The Novichok Edition is a limited edition, which sold out within a hours of being released, and we have no plans to produce any more.”