Bundaberg Rum’s Raising the Bar unveils ‘Don’t forget your local’ campaign via Leo Burnett


After a devastating 18 months for Australia’s hospitality industry, Bundaberg Rum’s $11.5 million COVID-19 recovery fund Raising the Bar is encouraging Australians to support their local pub, club, or bar with a new tongue-in-cheek campaign called ‘Don’t Forget Your Local’ developed by Leo Burnett Australia.


Set to appear in NSW, Victoria and Queensland, the campaign will feature on broadcast television, OOH, online and across social, along with media partnerships with Buzzfeed and the Urban List.

The ‘Don’t Forget Your Local’ campaign acknowledges that our hospitality sector has not only had to deal with lockdowns, restricted trading, and rising costs, but with new socialising habits that have seen us become far more comfortable on the couch than at the pub. So even when our local is open, we’re visiting them less frequently.

The campaign taps into the insight that returning to the local may be awkward at first, but it won’t be long after we order that first drink at the bar that we’ll remember just how good it feels to be back.

In a series of TVCs, Aussie comedian Becky Lucas playfully reminds us how to do all the things that once came naturally to us; carrying a round, breaking the ice with the stranger standing next to you at the bar, or simply ‘cheers’-ing a mate.

In launching ‘Don’t Forget Your Local’, Raising the Bar aims to get Aussies excited about getting back to their favourite local and in typical Bundy Rum humour, remind us of all the great times we’ve missed during COVID-19 lockdowns.

Says Jodi McLeod, marketing manager, Diageo: “Covid-19 has had a profound impact on the hospitality industry across Australia with pubs, clubs and bars of all sizes experiencing a massive impact to their businesses. The pandemic has changed the way we ‘local’ as safety regulations have made going to your local more structured and less spontaneous.

“Our challenge is to shift people out of their homes by reminding them about what makes our locals so special and focusing on the socialisation and community benefits of getting back together.”

Says Andy Fergusson, executive creative director, Leo Burnett: “It’s amazing how quickly our routines and habits have changed. Two years ago, the idea of needing to create a campaign to get Aussies back to their local would have been laughable. Now, it’s a serious problem to solve.

“But people are feeling a bit of community-responsibility fatigue, so we wanted to ensure the campaign didn’t come across as too earnest or preachy. Because, at the end of the day, we’re just reminding people that there’s a place round the corner where you can share a few laughs and drinks with your best mates. And even though we might have to relearn a few things, it’s still the same old local.”

Says Lucas: “The hospitality industry, like the live entertainment industry, has had a really tough time since COVID-19, so I’m proud to be a part of these ads and remind people of the great times that await, down at their local.

“This ‘Don’t Forget Your Local’ campaign is designed to help people like me, who may have spent a little too much time on their couch lately, brush up on a few important pub-rituals, like the art of a good ‘Cheers!” or how to carry a round of drinks.”

Says Stephen Ferguson, national CEO, Australian Hotels Association: “Our hoteliers and staff can’t want to welcome their patrons back to their favourite watering holes as life gets back to normal.

“Bundaberg Rum’s Raising the Bar initiative has done a great deal for Australia’s hospitality industry over the past year, and we’re excited about the launch of this new national advertising campaign.”

The national campaign is the next major initiative from Bundaberg Rum’s Raising the Bar that’s been providing ongoing support to Australia’s hospitality industry for more than 12 months. Over the last year it has provided more than 2000 hospitality venues across the country with COVID safe supplies, including more than 100,000 litres of hand sanitiser, more than 2 million items of PPE, and more than 4,000 digital thermometers.

Client: Diageo
Marketing Manager: Jodi McLeod
Corporate Relations & Sustainability Manager: Miriam Pape
Assistant Brand Manager: Isabella Margin
Creative Agency: Leo Burnett Australia
Chief Creative Officer: Jason Williams
Executive Creative Director: Andy Fergusson
Associate Creative Director: Nico Smith
Associate Creative Director: Mark Carbone
General Manager: James Walker-Smith
Group Business Director: Andrew Inman
Business Director: Prue Purnell
Head of Brand Innovation: Dan Pankraz
Head of Production: Adrian Jung
Senior Producer: Brooke Mather
Multimedia Studio Manager: Dan Crozier
Digital Designer: Janifer Wong
Production Company: GoodOil
Executive Producer: Sam Long
Director: Dave Wood
Producer: Lee Thompson
Stills Production: Flint
Photographer: Andreas Smetana
Executive Producer: Taryn Mueller
Producer: Christina Gerace
Media Agency: Foundation (Australia)
Corporate PR Agency: 89Degrees East
Post Production: The Editors
Senior Post Producer: Liv Reddy
Senior Editor: Mark Burnett
Editor: Lily Davis
Sound Design: Rumble Studios
Founder/Snr Sound Designer: Tone Aston
Executive Producer/ Partner: Michael Gie
Producer: Irene Kakopieros