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Vodify VS Crafted and Spiced the Non-Alcoholic task on the Apprentice Drinks Branding Task

The Apprentice Vodify

How do we rate Vodify, a Vodka, Lime & Soda drink as well as the spiced beer drink, Crafted and Spiced on The Apprentice episode 3, the Non-Alcoholic Drinks task.

Vodify, a Vodka, Lime & Soda drink without the vodka flavour. An innovative new spiced beer drink, Crafted and Spiced that tastes of peach instead of spice. You guessed it, we’ve been watching BBC’s The Apprentice. We love The Apprentice as it always feels like a fly on the wall documentary when we watch the creative branding tasks. This week, the two teams were tasked with making alcohol-free versions of their favourite drinks and both failed spectacularly. Lord Sugar even compared Vodify to his own urine. The big surprise was both teams managed to secure orders, with one team topping 10,000 sales.  

The whole team at LemonTop had a real interest in this task as this is our day job. We brought over 100 new beers to market last year, so we know what it takes to create a drinks brand from scratch. Granted they had the added arduous task of creating the drink itself, but what both teams failed to realise is that first impressions really do count. 

Picture: BBC’s The Apprentice – Vodify

While it’s the flavour of a drink that really matters when it comes to repeat purchasing, no one will appreciate that flavour if they are not first enticed into buying the product and trying it at home. Brands have about seven seconds to make a good impression on a potential buyer, so packaging design can be much more important than the product inside. You’ve got to get the bottle and can label design right if you stand any chance of creating a desirable product. 

Both teams had Project Managers who worked in the drinks industry but the insight they brought to the table seemed to stop dead when they were asked to think creatively. One of the most important things to do with any drinks branding is making sure your products look appealing and stand out from your competitors whether that’s on the supermarket shelf or online. What we saw yesterday, especially from “Crafted and Spiced” was a bland, unimaginative and rather dated concept of what a beer should look like. 

Now, don’t think we’re unduly criticising the candidates although the names Vodify, as well as Crafted and Spiced, aren’t great it isn’t easy in their allocation of time. We never like to cast aspersions on people who are not creative professionals, and we know how difficult the task was, especially having to create the flavour of the drink itself. After all, we’ve done it ourselves, with our own brand of LemonTop Gin. But it all goes to show that tasks like this in the hands of a team that don’t have the creative experience LemonTop have and don’t understand what is involved in promoting a beer from a consumer’s point of view, can result in some quite comical outcomes. 

The Apprentice, Crafted and spiced
Picture: BBC’s The Apprentice – Crafted and Spiced

What The Apprentice does for us is stir our emotions. We laugh, we sigh, we gasp, we shout…it’s a genuine rollercoaster of emotions when we watch someone muddling through a branding and design task like this. But drinks packaging design is one of our most dynamic and captivating design services. It is an inescapable part of everyday life, yet it requires a high standard of skilled design, and that’s where LemonTop excel. 

Got a project? Let’s talk… 

Whether you need a refreshing change, or you just want to heat things up a little, our services can help your brand stand out from the competition. We are more than happy to talk to you about your project, offer advice and supply free estimates. 

We are a hands-on, accessible team that you can contact anytime. If you would like to know more about us and how we can help you, give us a call on 01642 969222. We are flexible on how we can get together. Whether you prefer face to face meetings or would rather have virtual meetings over Zoom or Teams, just let us know and we’ll arrange a time that’s convenient to you. 

Alternatively, you can email us at or click the ‘Got a project? Let’s talk…’. 

Watch The Apprentice Series 16: 3. Non-Alcoholic Drinks on BBC iPlayer, click here

Images courtesy of the BBC iPlayer

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