In the world of celebrity brands, it’s not uncommon to see famous faces lending their name to spirits like tequila or vodka. However, when the stars of the hit TV show “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” decided to launch their own brand, they took a different route. Glenn Howerton, Charlie Day, and Rob McElhenney, the stars of the show, launched a whiskey brand called Four Walls. In this article, we’ll dive into the reasons behind their decision, their unique approach to branding, and how they leveraged their existing fanbase to drive the success of their new venture.
The Birth of Four Walls
Initially, the team behind Four Walls had entertained the idea of launching a celebrity beer brand. They saw an opportunity to bring something authentic to the market, inspired by the success of other high-end celebrity spirits. However, after considering the logistics and costs associated with shipping beer, they shifted their focus to whiskey. Casey McGrath, a fellow co-founder, highlighted the high shipping costs of liquid products, which ultimately led to the decision to create a whiskey brand instead.
While whiskey became their beverage of choice, the team still wanted to incorporate the essence of a beer brand into Four Walls. This decision was driven by McGrath’s love for beer advertising and the desire to celebrate the good times, just like the best beer brands do. The company’s advertising efforts, therefore, reflect the aesthetics and messaging typically associated with beer brands.
Learning from Ryan Reynolds
When launching Four Walls, McElhenney and Howerton looked to their friend and business partner, Ryan Reynolds, who had experienced success with his own spirit brand, Aviation Gin. Reynolds advised them to create a product that they genuinely loved and to have fun with their messaging while never making fun of the product itself. This approach aligned with the team’s comedic style and allowed them to develop a brand that felt authentic to their fans.
Avoiding the Pitfalls of Celebrity Brands
Celebrity-fronted spirit brands can often become easy targets for criticism and skepticism. To avoid these pitfalls, the team behind Four Walls wanted to ensure their brand stood out and could compete with established players in the industry. They achieved this by leveraging the power of other brands they were associated with, such as Wrexham FC and “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.”
By incorporating Four Walls branding into the sleeve of the training kit for Wrexham FC, a Welsh football club co-owned by McElhenney and Reynolds, they were able to gain exposure and reach a wider audience. The popularity of the FX documentary series “Welcome to Wrexham” further contributed to the success of the brand. The team recognized the power of storytelling and created opportunities for the Wrexham and Four Walls brands to merge together, enhancing their overall reach and impact.
The Power of Fandom
One of the key drivers of Four Walls’ rapid growth is the loyal fanbase of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” Viewers of the show have shown immense support for the whiskey brand, even if they aren’t typically whiskey drinkers. The team attributes this success to the strong relationship they have built with their fans over the years. By delivering a quality product and maintaining their fans’ trust, they have been able to tap into the show’s popularity and convert viewers into customers.
“We look at this as a creative endeavor, in the same way that ‘It’s Always Sunny’ is a creative endeavor,” Howerton explained. The team’s dedication to their craft and their commitment to delivering a product that aligns with their fans’ expectations have been instrumental in their success. They understand the importance of authenticity and the need to uphold the goodwill they have built over the years.
The Future of Four Walls
While production for “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” has yet to resume following the end of the Hollywood strikes, the show has already been renewed for Season 17 and 18. This renewal solidifies its status as the longest-running live-action sitcom in U.S. TV history. With the continued success of the show and the thriving Four Walls whiskey brand, McElhenney, Howerton, and the rest of the team are poised for even greater achievements in the future.
See first source: Adweek
1. Who are the celebrities behind Four Walls whiskey?
Four Walls whiskey is founded by Glenn Howerton, Charlie Day, Rob McElhenney, and Casey McGrath, with Glenn, Charlie, and Rob being the stars of the TV show “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.”
2. What initially led the team to consider launching a celebrity beer brand?
Initially, the team considered launching a celebrity beer brand but later shifted their focus to whiskey due to the high shipping costs associated with liquid products.
3. How did Four Walls incorporate elements of a beer brand into their whiskey branding?
Four Walls incorporated elements of a beer brand by aligning their advertising aesthetics and messaging with the celebratory and fun-loving style often associated with beer brands.
4. What advice did the team receive from Ryan Reynolds when launching Four Walls?
Ryan Reynolds, a friend and business partner, advised them to create a product they genuinely loved and to have fun with their messaging while never making fun of the product itself. This approach aligned with their comedic style and authenticity.
5. How did the team behind Four Walls avoid the common pitfalls of celebrity-fronted spirit brands?
They avoided pitfalls by leveraging their association with other brands, such as Wrexham FC and “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” By incorporating Four Walls branding into the Wrexham FC training kit and through the FX documentary series “Welcome to Wrexham,” they gained exposure and enhanced their reach.
6. What role has the loyal fanbase of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” played in the success of Four Walls whiskey?
The loyal fanbase of the show has been instrumental in the rapid growth of Four Walls whiskey. Fans have supported the brand, even if they aren’t typically whiskey drinkers, thanks to the strong relationship the team has built with them over the years.
7. What is the team’s approach to maintaining authenticity and goodwill with their fans?
The team views Four Walls as a creative endeavor and is committed to delivering a quality product that aligns with their fans’ expectations. They understand the importance of authenticity and the need to uphold the goodwill they have built.
8. What does the future hold for Four Walls whiskey and the team behind it?
With the continued success of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” and the thriving Four Walls whiskey brand, the team is poised for even greater achievements in the future. The show has been renewed for Season 17 and 18, solidifying its status as the longest-running live-action sitcom in U.S. TV history.
Featured Image Credit: Photo by Thomas Park; Unsplash – Thank you!