The beer brand tested whether a creator-led, Reels-first content strategy could drive relevance with a younger audience in Australia, and achieved a 5.5-point higher incremental lift in affinity compared to its usual campaign strategy.

Hopped-up beverage

Carlton Dry is a lager produced by Carlton & United Breweries, and one of the largest and best-known beer brands in Australia. The Carlton Dry team consistently works to increase brand relevance with the next generation of beer drinkers.


higher incremental lift in affinity


higher incremental reach


longer average watch time


decrease in cost per ThruPlay

We had an ambition to increase the Carlton Dry brand’s relevancy with Gen Z, who are a particularly inclusive and progressive generation. The creator-first, Reels-first approach of the Carlton Dry Collective allowed us to authentically connect with the younger generation via a diverse group of creators who each had their own uniquely engaged communities.
Building greater brand relevance

The beer brand wanted to create a brand strategy that could help refresh its image and connect with a Gen Z audience in a way that communicated inclusivity and authenticity.

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Speaking Gen Z’s language

To reach Gen Z as authentically as possible, Carlton Dry worked with Amplify, a production and talent agency specializing in creator marketing, to set up the Carlton Dry Collective, a diverse group of four creators connected to Gen Z culture. The creators worked with the beer brand to produce a Reel that they each posted to their own Instagram account.

Once the creators posted their Reels using the paid partnership label, Carlton Dry worked with its in-house digital agency, 1House, to set up an awareness campaign. The resulting branded content ads took the creators’ Reels and turned them into video ads placed across Facebook and Instagram. The team optimized the campaign for ad recall lift as well as for the ThruPlay objective to maximize views and ensure the storytelling style of the video creative was supported.

The Carlton Dry Collective campaign ran at the same time as the brand’s usual campaign—a product-focused promotion that highlighted the potential to win prizes with purchase, and used heavily branded, traditional creative assets. Carlton Dry served both campaigns to people aged 18–39 living in Australia and used the same optimizations.

To gain insights into the performance of the branded content ads, which ran between May 30–July 9, 2022, Carlton Dry conducted a two-cell brand lift study that compared the branded content ads to the usual campaign. To further understand the impact of Reels, the team compared the campaign’s results to the ad account average in Meta Ads Manager.

  • 5.5-point higher incremental lift in affinity, compared to usual campaign
  • 58% higher incremental reach, compared to usual campaign
  • 1.6X longer average watch time, compared to usual campaign
  • 45% decrease in cost per ThruPlay, compared to ad account average
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In this campaign, we left the interpretation and creative direction up to each creator, which allowed for talent to produce pieces true to their voice and content style. This authenticity and creativity has resonated with each of their audiences. The strength and authenticity of the content have been received well across a broad audience.