Carling and BBA: Bugs by Slaves

In support of our 'Long Live the Local' campaign, we teamed up with Britain’s Number 1 beer Carling and the punk band Slaves to create an innovative initiative that had a clear message ‘Keeping pubs alive, keeps music live’.

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Keep pubs alive, Keep music alive 

Despite serving the country for generations, our pubs are under threat from a range of pressures, and right now they are closing at a rate of 3 per day; if this continues, within 10 years we could lose a quarter of Britain’s pubs. In 2018 we created ‘Long Live the Local’, a campaign for Britain’s Beer Alliance to help save ‘the local’ - aiming to stop closures and prevent the planned rise in beer tax, simply by getting people to sign a petition and put pressure on the Chancellor himself.

In support of this campaign and as an attempt to get a younger audience to sign the petition, we teamed up with Britain’s Number 1 beer Carling and the punk band Slaves to create an innovative initiative that had a clear message ‘Keeping pubs alive, keeps music live’.

It wouldn’t be enough to simply tell a younger audience about the threat. We had to make it personal by connecting to something that really matters to them. No pubs = No bands. No bands = no music. Enter Slaves. A young British punk band who started out gigging in pubs and were popular with younger audiences.

Based on the truth that all great bands started by gigging in pubs and to dramatise the reality of pubs closing down every day in the UK, we developed the creative concept for the Slaves next music video for their single, ‘Bugs’, specifically for the campaign.

Filmed in The George, a real pub that itself has been under threat of closure, the video, which shows the band performing in a pub as it falls to pieces, is a tribute to the bands love for the British pub whilst showing the devastating effect pub closures have on the British music scene.


"Without pubs we would have had nowhere to start our career. Pubs are so important to the careers of musicians. They are pillars of communities and need saving."
The Slaves, band

With support from Havas UK’s media agency Havas Media and PR agency One Green Bean, the music video launched across multiple channels - YouTube, Facebook and Daily Motion. It achieved over one million views. Shortened 15 second cut down videos were also launched on social media, on both the BBA and Slaves' channels, to direct the audience to experience the full video on the website and to sign the petition.
The Results
The campaign message was clear lose pubs and you lose live music. This message was delivered live and direct to a seemingly unreachable audience, from a band very happy to make noise about it. We made the response process simple - see the video, click the link, sign the petition…and the signatures came rolling in.
The music video achieved a million views in less than 1 month of upload to YouTube and resulted in over 1,600 direct petition signatures - 57 signatures per day. Plus, additional signatures were driven from PR and social. The story behind the video grabbed the media's attention gaining both industry press (Campaign, The Drum and Adforum) and also music press (NME, Clash Music, and Rock and Load). It was shared by fellow artists like James Arthur and the song continues to top the music charts.

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