Drinkers call for brands with character.
When you’re competing in the cluttered environment of the bar or duty free, it’s vital to find a way to cut through. The study shows that a distinctive brand, consistently delivered is more important in driving excitement in alcohol than any other sector. But having a distinctive character doesn’t just mean being recognisable – it means having something to say. Even more influential is the sense that the brand is provocative and challenging, an impression that Skol in Brazil and Hibiki in Thailand have managed to create.
Unsurprisingly in a category as social as drinking, the greatest driver of choice is other people’s choices. The thing that gets people most excited about a brand is seeing others enjoy it. But the data suggests a converse demand – that consumers demand a sense of personalisation from their alcohol brands. The brands winning the Participation battle are therefore those delivering a sense of belonging that is at once personal and social. Johnnie Walker and Smirnoff, the two category leaders across multiple markets, have succeeded in building a greater sense of community amongst considerers than any other brand in the study – stronger even than Apple.
But the final piece of the jigsaw is the experience of the product itself. The category are notable by their ability to build experiences around the product itself. Drinkers feel these brands make the moment of buying the brand more rewarding than others.
Provocative, surprising product experiences that make the drinker feel part of something – that’s the secret to brand building for alcohol brands in the Participation Era. If that has whet your appetite, read on…