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Because of regulatory concerns and limited budgets, Spirits brands have been late adopters of most digital trends. However, with recent clarity from trade associations and more sophisticated targeting on social media platforms, coupled with declining viewership on traditional advertising outlets, digital is becoming an increasingly key component of Spirits marketing. The 2015 Digital IQ Index: Spirits assesses the digital performance of 76 Spirits brands operating in the U.S. market. Additional analysis examines the digital impact of brand ambassadors, online merchandise sales, and brand partnerships with Drizly and Minibar.
July 20, 2015
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The alcoholic beverages industry has been one of the last to migrate advertising and sales efforts online, challenged by unclear regulations and a disjointed distribution system absent from other verticals. Traditional TV advertising still claims roughly a third of media spend among alcoholic beverage advertisers, while digital represents just 4 percent of media spend. But target audiences have moved online: 29 percent of online TV viewers now fall into the 25-34 demographic and Facebook has a larger daily reach than the big four TV networks combined. And change is coming. In the last year, Internet spending in the industry increased by 27 percent, compared to just a 3.7 percent increase in TV advertising. While online grocery continues to sideline alcohol sales due to compliance concerns, brands are partnering with the growing number of on-demand services such as Drizzly and Minibar, which are willing to offer advertising and media placements absent from more traditional online grocery platforms. As a group, the five Beer and Spirits Genius brands in our 2015 Digital IQ Indices demonstrate the following characteristics: E-commerce innovation, successful amplification of offline campaigns via digital efforts, and robust content investments. The 2015 Digital IQ Indices for Beer and Spirits benchmark the digital competences of 67 Beer and 76 Spirits brands operating in the U.S.