A masterclass in drama and surprise from Veuve Cliquot

Veuve Cliquot continues to offer a masterclass in how to build a brand in a crowded category through drama and surprise.

Always intelligent, always creative, always taking what every other brand in their category takes for granted (usually the outer packaging) and showing us a completely different way to think about it.

And, in doing so, de-positioning not so much the market leader as every other player in the category as dull and unimaginative. 

Personally, I had always considered their high point the wit of the paint can with the single serve bottles a decade ago but last week's display in Munich airport ran the can close.

Apparently a signpost sticking up in the middle of the duty free counter showing the distance to the great cities of the world from Reims, the orange display then offered its bottles in tins echoing those signposts - to Kyoto, Rome, Mexico City, Shanghai and beyond.

Entertainingly positing Reims as the centre of the world in the middle of a huge array of spirit competitors bleating about their own country of origin, at the same time it flatters us as worldly travellers to choose on our bottle the destination we aspire to or identify with most.

Drama and surprise don't have to be the shock and awe of BrewDog's coups de theatre. They can also take the elegant orange form of the widow Cliquot. It just depends on how you want to get noticed.

Assuming, of course, you want to get noticed at all.