ALAC Had Enough to Drink in New Zealand?

ALAC (Alcohol Advisory Council of New Zealand) has launched a TV advertising campaign reminding the public how easily social drinking can go wrong. “It’s not what we’re drinking, it’s how we’re drinking.”

Danny in ALAC TV ad

“These commercials are unpleasant but so are the consequences of binge drinking,” ALAC CEO Gerard Vaughan says. “The ads mirror what is happening, unfortunately, every week around this country. It is time to be brutally honest about some of the worst effects of intoxication.” A house party goes horribly wrong when Mark offers his nephew a flight around the living room. Lisa, under the influence of alcohol, finally succumbs to the predatory male in the bar.Danny’s time at the pub with mates turns into a drunken rage.

Vaughan says the three television commercials focus on transformation – when good times turn bad.

“Each follows one person through from when they start drinking to when they finish. During this time, there is a ‘tipping point’ when harmless behaviour become harmful – to themselves and others. We see how the situation changes as the individual makes poor choices as a result of the alcohol consumed. Despite the success of previous advertising, the message has yet to get through to many people about the cost, not only to the country, but personal and family costs to health and happiness, from excessive drinking,” Mr Vaughan says. “Previous advertising has focused on ‘softer’ consequences such as embarrassment and regret. The new campaign focuses on more serious stark realities.”

Lisa in ALAC TV ad

The commercials feature an 0800 number (freephone 0800 787 797) and website (going live on 7 April 2008) The 0800 number directs callers to the Alcohol Drug Helpline, while the campaign website has information about binge drinking, where to go for help, being a responsible host, managing your drinking, and campaign materials. Each of the three ads is available to download in Quicktime and Windows Media formats.

Mark in ALAC TV ad


The campaign was developed at Clemenger BBDO Wellington, by executive creative director Philip Andrew, creative director Mark Harricks, copywriters/art directors Brigid Alkema and Paul Young, agency producer Christina Hazard.

Filming was shot by Adam Stevens via Robber’s Dog, with producer Mark Foster.