Category B05. Use of Print / Outdoor
Idea Creation BBDO BELGIUM Brussels, BELGIUM
Media Placement BBDO BELGIUM Brussels, BELGIUM
Production BBDO BELGIUM Brussels, BELGIUM
Name Company Position
Sebastien De Valck BBDO Creative Director
Arnaud Pitz BBDO Creative Director
Frederik Clarysse BBDO Creative
Isabel Peeters BBDO Chief Commercial Officer
Christophe Malotaux BBDO Graphic Designer
Sofie Verstreken BBDO Chief Strategy Officer
Jesse Donkor BBDO Strategist
Lore Desmet BBDO Account Director
Lieselot De Fraine BBDO Account Manager
Josse Peremans AB Inbev Marketing Manager
Arnaud Hanset AB Inbev Marketing Director
Maxime Pudzeis AB Inbev Brand Manager

Why is this work relevant for Direct?

On may 18 2019, Sarah Bettens, one of Belgium’s most famous rock stars, announced her transition towards masculinity and became Sam Bettens. A huge moment for the transgender community in Belgium, and a big step towards normalization of transgender people in general. Jupiler, Belgium's most old-school masculine beer brand, published a print ad just one day later, along with the first printed newspaper coverage. The ad adressed Sam directly and offered him a beer. This simple call to action communicated to Sam that he was instantly recognised and accepted as a man.


Jupiler is the leading beer brand in Belgium. And also the most stereotypical masculine brand. Its tagline has been “Men know why” for over 30 years. It has always communicated with traditional masculine codes. Because of this the brand still has a lot of credibility among traditional men. Jupiler decided to use this influence to help make society more inclusive. Sarah Bettens is one of Belgium’s most accomplished rock stars, receiving international recoginition and scoring massive hits with the band “K’s Choice”. On may 18 she announced her transition from female to male. Sam Bettens became one of the first, and certainly the most high profile celebrity to make such a public transition. While most of society seems accepting towards transgenders, research has shown that many men still aren’t. Jupiler decided this was the perfect moment to promote more acceptance of transgender people among traditional men.

Describe the creative idea (30% of vote)

On may 18 2019, Sarah Bettens, one of Belgium’s most famous rock stars, announced her transition towards masculinity and became Sam Bettens. A huge moment for the transgender community in Belgium. One day later, Jupiler, Belgium’s most masculine beer brand, published a newspaper ad stating two simple words: “Pintje, Sam?”. In English: “Fancy a beer, Sam?”. Offering Sam a beer as a sign of male acceptance. The message to men was clear: Sam is instantly one of the guys. A simple beer served as a low-barrier conversation starter on the topic for those men. This traditional brand suddenly made a strong point about the normalization of transgender people. Without endless debates. Just no- nonsense instant acceptance

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

Jupiler has always been the most masculine Beer brand in the country. It used traditional masculine codes in its communication and is often perceived as stereotypical. However, the brand is still very popular among traditional men. A recent study by the Belgian institute for the equality of women and men (the “beyond the box” study) has shown that traditional men have more difficulties accepting transgender people’s new identities than women. Jupiler used this influence to guide them towards a more inclusive attitude. The call to action was directed to Sam, but at the same time to all men in general: a call to accept transgender men as equals. And even more important, Jupiler opened up the transgender debate to a broader, difficult to reach audience, while using the everyday language of men and the low-barrier gesture of offering a beer.

Describe the execution (20% of vote)

On may 20, all newspapers had a lot of attention for the news that Sam Bettens broke the night before. Overnight, we negotiated a deal with the the country's two most-read newspapers: "Het Laatste Nieuws" and "De Morgen", who, combined, reach almost 3 million people. At the very last minute they integrated a full page ad on the back cover. An ad that instantly became part of the news. With this big mainstream print ad placement – using a simple, no-nonsense tone of voice and design - Jupiler made a powerful statement for everyone to see: we instantly accept Sam Bettens as a man.

List the results (30% of vote)

Total earned reach: 30,467,076 impressions with a total offline reach of 5.224.407 Belgians (total population 11mill.) and an online reach of 8,275,601 unique visitors. Via news and talkshows on the four main TV channels (public and commercial) and 18 different radio stations, Jupiler reached 7,133,851 Belgians. total earned media value: 1,3 million. online newspaper polls indicating up to 75% positive evaluation rate in newspaper polls. Positive sentiment was driven by the transgender community, influencers, experts and celebreties etc. The current brand awareness of Jupiler is already sky-high at 99,7% and further increased with 0,3% after the campaign). Brand trial increased significantly with 1.7% in the months after the press stunt.