Andre Amaral | The Innovator 25 EMEA 2019

Andre Amaral

Head of Marketing

Camden Town Brewery

“Innovation is taking an unexpected road that leads to more success than the expected one.”

Andre Amaral is the marketing director for Camden Town Brewery in London, one of the small brewers that was at the forefront of the UK’s craft beer revolution – and which has managed to retain its independent spirit and methods since being bought by AB-InBev in 2015. Since joining the company a year ago, Amaral has made the brand even more famous by evolving its communications strategy, using hugely creative earned media and putting its purpose firmly at the heart of all messaging. He’s also transformed the way the brewery works with its agencies across the marketing mix. Amaral has plenty of experience in the beer industry, having worked on AB-InBev brands including Budweiser, Leffe, Corona and Stella Artois for more than eight years. A big believer in the power of creativity to solve business problems, Amaral is not afraid to take risks to get the Camden Town Brewery brand noticed.

In what way(s) does PR/communications need to innovate the most?
I’m a big believer in looking at marketing as entertainment. Brands are fighting for people’s attention with some big successful players, with new ones showing up every day. We need to change the way we behave and communicate to be a valid alternative for people’s time. For this to happen successfully we must change the way we measure success, specifically in the world of PR and earned media.

How would you describe the communications/PR industry's level of innovation compared to other marketing disciplines?
Lagging behind others.

Where is the PR industry's greatest opportunity for taking the lead on innovation?
Creative ideas.

How do you define innovation?
Taking an unexpected road that leads to more success than the expected one.

What is the most innovative comms/marketing initiative you've seen in the last 12 months?
I thought what VLMY&R and the Polish newspaper did with The Last Ever Issue was groundbreaking. The idea couldn't better express their purpose and the boldness of the execution is amazing.

In your opinion, what brands and/or agencies are most innovative around PR and marketing?
There's no point in avoiding the cliché: Burger King is definitely giving a PR and marketing lesson to everyone at the moment.

Describe a moment in your career that you would consider innovative.
Creating the campaign Budweiser Dream Goal. At the time it was a new way to be relevant in football without a sponsorship and a creative model that combined technology, celebrities and genuine consumer passions.

Most underrated trait in a PR person?
Good understanding of paid media and how that can help your earned media work much harder.

How do you get out of a creativity rut?
Obviously, I go for a beer.

What advice would you give to the PR industry around embracing innovation?
Get closer to other industries. Meet media companies, creative agencies, filmmakers, musicians, gamers, writers, artists. There’s a lot of people breaking through the clutter. Learn with them.

What are you thinking about most these days? 
How to entertain people.

What one movie, book, TV show or podcast do you recommend to rent, read or stream tonight?
That Will Never Work – The Birth of Netflix and the Amazing Life of an Idea.