There is a new trend in consumer behavior when it comes to alcohol sales. Studies show the importance of occasion-driven consumer choices that boost sales of alcoholic beverages. Therefore, understanding this specific aspect of consumer preferences is a huge opportunity for craft spirits companies to maximize sales in the alcohol industry.
Let’s go over some ways in which your alcohol brand can leverage this trend to increase the sale of your product.
A very effective way to appeal to occasion-driven consumers is by offering food pairings and special offers. The wine industry has long been associated with food pairings, but this trend is now extending to craft spirits as well as beverages.
In fact, by doing a quick search on the social media profiles of distilleries, we see they are promoting food pairings as a way to boost alcohol sales and create brand loyalty. The idea is to pair cocktails made with your products with specific dishes to create a memorable experience for consumers.
How about promoting a food pairing at your distillery or tasting room? One way of doing this is to partner up with a rising chef talent, a local restaurant, a food catering company, a bakery, or a food truck. Then you offer signature cocktail suggestions that complement specific dishes of, let’s say, a 3-course menu. Additionally, you can offer ready-to-drink cocktails that pair perfectly with the dishes.
This food pairing event can be promoted to your email list, club members, and social media followers. You can also get the chef or company you are doing the event with to cross-promote on his channels.
It’s a great way to get shoppers who are looking for a special occasion to enjoy with a group of friends or family to visit your location while also creating this exclusive experience for them. Customers are willing to pay a high price for this kind of exclusive event because it involves a comprehensive experience. Additionally, upselling during the event can increase revenue and provide a more personalized experience for the customers.
Another way of incorporating food pairing into your strategy is to ask your sales rep or local brand ambassador to pursue menu placements at accounts such as restaurants. This should be developed in conjunction with the chef at the restaurant you are targeting. The pairings will be cocktails that pair up with specific dishes the restaurant offers, which can be included in the drink menu.
It is important to have a team member from your craft spirits brand give the bartender at the restaurant some tips on how to make the perfect signature cocktail, which will be offered as a combo with specific restaurant dishes. Additionally, having a ready-to-drink version of the signature cocktail available for purchase can increase brand exposure and provide a convenient option for customers on the go.
Crafting signature cocktails is a great way to maximize alcohol sales at your establishment. Unique and creative cocktails not only attract customers but also create a memorable experience for them. Develop a menu of signature cocktails that showcase your bartender’s skills and incorporate trendy ingredients or innovative flavor combinations.
Promote these cocktails through social media, happy hour specials, or special events to generate buzz and increase sales. By offering something exclusive and exciting, you can differentiate yourself from competitors and drive more customers to your bar or tasting room and ultimately, maximize alcohol sales.
Back in my days at the liquor store, I used to conduct tastings and gather data for various spirits companies. As I interacted with consumers and sold them bottles, I asked them about their reasons for choosing that particular bottle.
What I discovered was fascinating! Consumers weren’t just buying alcohol for the sake of it; they were looking for something more – an experience, a moment to unwind, a celebration, or a special occasion that could boost liquor sales. I vividly remember one customer saying, “I need something to wind down after a week of work, or I need something special for tonight. Tomorrow is my day off.” This made me realize that consumers were truly occasion-driven, and even a day off was reason enough for them to indulge in a bottle. Understanding shopper behavior is crucial to cater to their needs and preferences.
Distilleries, craft spirits brands, and local breweries can appeal to occasion-driven consumers by promoting a lifestyle that resonates with their values and interests. By focusing on the emotional experience and idea behind the brand, distilleries, craft spirits brands, and local breweries can create a connection with consumers who are looking for more than just a drink.
Here are some examples of consumers’ lifestyles: playing sports, listening to music, or hanging out with their do. So very likely consumers will buy a bottle from a brand that reflects their interests.
Some ways to transmit this message is by leveraging social media, not only to showcase your product but also to promote the lifestyle associated with your brand, encouraging consumers to share the same experience and build a community around the brand. Building a strong online presence is crucial in today’s digital age, and social media is a powerful tool to achieve that.
Many craft spirits brands are selling a lifestyle beyond the spirits. By taking a look at their imagery on social media and advertisements, we can see brands that have recurring themes to appeal to their target audience, such as:
The easiest way to reproduce this for your brand is to reflect on yourself. What are your values? Why did you start making your spirits? What makes your product distinctive? By answering these questions, you will be able to create a strategy that resonates with your target audience’s lifestyle and the occasions that may help maximize alcohol sales for your brand.
Targeting special occasions will boost alcohol sales for your product. You may want to consider running social media campaigns focused on specific occasions, such as St Patrick’s Day, football season, and the Fourth Of July. By creating visually-stunning content specifically for the campaign as well as shareable content that appeals to occasion-driven consumers you can create brand awareness and boost sales.
Some examples of this content could be a seasonal recipe with your products, or a video showcasing the perfect cocktail for Valentine’s Day dinner. By using social media, alcoho9l brands can connect with consumers in a way that feels personal and relevant to the current occasion.
Outside online marketing platforms, your brand can boost sales by planning seasonal off-premise events. Tastings are a cost-effective and impactful way for craft spirits brands to increase sales during busy seasons.
We have a lot of success with internal brand ambassador programs for spirits brands that schedule tastings at liquor stores during the busy season, like right before Christmas and St. Patrick’s Day for example.
The off-premise events provide opportunities to showcase the product and get potential customers to try the spirits and make informed purchase decisions, leading to increased sales.
Additionally, tastings can potentially lead to repeat business and brand loyalty. It also helps to build relationships with liquor store owners and staff, who can become advocates for the brand and recommend it to customers.
The key to making the special events online or in-person campaign work is to plan ahead so that you have plenty of time to produce the photos, visuals, and everything that is going to be used in the campaign. And also to be able to add the campaign to your social media marketing calendar with enough time for planning and making necessary adjustments.
To maximize alcohol sales, focus on strategic pricing, attractive promotions, and creating an appealing atmosphere in your establishment. Additionally, offer a diverse selection of drinks to cater to different preferences and consider partnering with local vendors or hosting events to attract more customers.
In an effort to understand how to maximize alcohol sales, the importance of occasion-driven consumer choices cannot be understated. With this knowledge, craft spirits companies can tailor their marketing strategies to align with the emotional experience that consumers crave when purchasing alcohol.
By understanding and catering to the consumer’s desires, companies can maximize alcohol sales and establish themselves as a go-to brand for any occasion. So, whether it’s a special celebration or a simple night in, make sure your brand is top of mind for consumers looking to make their occasion unforgettable with the perfect craft spirit.