Concept56 is a ground breaking project catering to young creatives who are looking for something more than just a job.
Spearheaded by Jägermeister, it aims to work with young talent in new ways to engage with a generation that does not seek to be tied to an office for the rest of their lives.
The first edition was held in 2014-15 in Amsterdam, and in 2015 it was taken to Madrid (Spain) with great success.
A call for talent was made seeking five young creatives who were offered a 5 month position with the task of organising the brand’s most important event that year in Madrid.
Concept56 received over 800 application forms which candidates were required to fill in by hand.
The 12 page form was packed with unexpected questions that included how to organise an evacuation in a zombie apocalypse or their all time favourite album covers. The process was geared towards evaluating their creative abilities and achievement rather than focusing too much on their academic qualifications.
After reading through the questionnaires we invited 30 finalists to be interviewed over two days in april 2015. They received a WhatsApp message giving them an allotted time and a location but no other information.
Once they arrived at the selected point they were instructed to go to the 22nd floor of the Torres Blancas building in Madrid, located nearby.
Candidates were seated in a CEO style desk and raised above the interviewers changing the perspective of traditional interviews.
After a very tough selection process we chose five young talents completely espousing traditional advertising and events agency roles.
All of them were under 28 years of age.
During the following five months, the team worked in a rented space underneath a bookshop in the centre of Madrid.
They attended lectures, took offbeat tours of the city with historian Carlos Osorio, went to exhibitions and received many guest speakers in their work space.
After 2 months of creative work, Concept56 travelled to the Jägermeister head offices in Wolfenbüttel (Germany) to present the concept they had created.
Everything seemed perfectly positioned for this young and talented team. The concept was approved, celebrations took place with shots of Jäger at the brands guest house and the team returned to Spain feeling confident they could pull it off.
Unfortunately it was not to be. A few weeks after we encountered legal issues which meant it would not be possible to hold it in the venue we had in mind. There was less than 3 months left till the event and we were forced to go back to the drawing board. Nerves set in but we did not give up.
The experience allowed the team to fail early and turn things around creating an all together more powerful concept which would end up being the idea behind the Jägermeister event:
Concept56 created a fictional story around Curt Mast, the founder of Jägermeister in the early 1930’s.
During a walk in the woods near Wolfenbüttel, Mast found a rock with smoke billowing from it. He poured water and took it home with him. Plants soon grew out of it and Mast used them as ingredients to create the legendary drink Jägermeister.
Mast joined a secret society known as POPLA founded in the 15th century in Florence that analyses these rocks with the hope of one day travelling to the planet where these ingredients came from. The complete story can be seen in this video:
Fast forward to 2014 and scientists have found the planet where this meteorite came from. The POPLA foundation will be conducting the first journey there in 2020 and has opened a space academy to train the aspiring travellers. The proliferation of autotune and selfie sticks has made the need to start new civilisations elsewhere more urgent.
The video above was created in response to a teaser campaign we launched where a rogue astronaut called Astronauta Conrado took to Facebook and Instagram revealing POPLA’s secret plan. This allowed to create tension and expectation for the event before Jägermeister was even mentioned in the communication. The storyline went as follows: Conrado is an aspiring astronaut and member of POPLA. He presents himself as a candidate but is deemed not in the right state of mind to travel to Tarandus. Outraged by the news he decides to vent his frustration with the world on his Facebook and Instagram accounts sharing important information about the upcoming event.
A few weeks before the event took place, guests were given a URL address and a password that directed them to a fake selfi e-commerce site. With the secret code they were able to access the information on the event and a small form to fill in their details and confirm their assistance.
At the same time, Conrado the Astronaut shared the secret password on his social accounts so anybody could go inside and find out about the party. For those who were not directly invited, there was a section in the website which allowed them to introduce themselves and explain why they should be chosen to go on the space mission. 20 candidates were selected through this channel.
To keep everything as secret as possible, a completely unexpected location was chosen. Concept56 rented a recently opened Karaoke space on the outskirts of Madrid with 25 rooms which would serve as classrooms for the guests.
On the day of the event, on the 15th of October, we gave invitees a time and a place where they were picked up by buses in the centre of Madrid and transported to the event location. They had no idea where it would be held until they saw it with their own eyes once the bus turned up at the Karaoke.
Attendants were given a welcome pack with all the information they needed. Each room was given a space theme:
13 personalities were invited to brief guests on everything they needed to know for the space trip ahead of them.
Radio presenter Javier Gallego spoke about the music he would take with himself to space and Celia Blanco, journalist and sex author briefed guests on the pros and cons of having sex in space.
Comedians Álvaro Carmona, Luis Álvaro, Edu Galán, Miguel Esteban and Canódromo Abandonado all gave their own perspectives on the journey ahead of them.
Javier Lacort recounted his experience living on protein drink Joylent for 30 full days. Jonatan Peris gave us advice on how to get to the planet Tarandus safe and sound. Carmelo Rodríguez gave his view of architecture in space. Astrophysicist Daniel Guirado created live experiments which helped guests understand more about space travel. Anna Lacambra gave tips on how to grow our own food outside of earth’s orbit. A VR experience was commissioned to show attendants what life on Planet Tarandus will be like.
Actors were hired to represent members of the centuries old secret society POPLA.
The event was rounded off with music by WLDV, Bflecha and Marc Piñol.
And of course, Karaoke.
If POPLA’s scientists calculations turn out to be correct, the guests will be travelling to Tarandus in 2020.
Concept56 has now finished in Madrid but this is not the last time you will be hearing about this incredible creative endeavour.
Next year the project will be moving to Detroit and Nashville. More cities will follow soon.
And remember, winter never comes to Concept56.