Strong strategy distills a potent brand for Spritmuseum


    Like any good tipple, Spritmuseum was a while in the making. As the Historical Wine and Spirits Museum (a single 36-letter word in Swedish) it was drawing just 10,000 visitors a year and having trouble competing with Stockholm’s numerous other cultural attractions. Then the museum acquired the last remaining pair of 18th-century naval sheds on the island of Djurgården, and a transformation began.


    The restored waterside sheds could store and exhibit the Absolut art collection, which was in the museum’s keeping, and allow the story of the Swedish relationship with hard liquor to be told in a dynamic, multisensory and suitably fluid fashion. It was vital to create a strong brand, to give the museum a voice and a presence in Stockholm’s cultural landscape. SDL’s task was to define that brand and help draw a new, larger audience to the southern shore of Djurgården.


    Based on research identifying the potential for a new, well-travelled, sophisticated audience, we developed a brand platform, positioning and personality, and a new, much shorter name. ‘Spritmuseum’ conveyed the new focus on spirits and, set in Absolut’s modified Futura font, it gave a nod to the main sponsor. In the join between the sheds, we saw a cocktail glass: this became a symbol for navigation, souvenirs and bags. And the simple design programme we developed guided the production of all the museum’s communications.


    A reduction of 70% in the letter-count of the museum’s name was appreciated by listings editors everywhere. Perhaps more importantly, we created a potent brand for Spritmuseum and helped to drive its complete reinvention. Annual visitor numbers immediately soared to 150,000, and very quickly, Spritmuseum became established as the newest, coolest destination among many on Djurgården. And it’s still showing no sign of getting drunk on its own success.