Energy drinks in it for the long haul

Operators urged to extend use of energy brands from ‘bomb’ serves to mixed drinks


THERE’S no denying the impact the so-called ‘bomb’ serve has had on sales of energy drinks in Scotland’s bars and clubs.

But it seems operators who focus solely on the short serve could be missing a trick.
Acknowledging that the ‘bomb’ serve remains popular with consumers, the firm behind Red Bull urged licensee and bartenders to broaden their horizons when it comes to using energy drinks as mixers.

Although ‘bomb’ drinks are popular, long mixed drinks give bars a profit and volume opportunity.

Tom Smith, trade communications manager at Red Bull, said as consumers are going out less often but spending more when they do, it’s vital operators take advantage of that increased spend.
“With the ‘weekend millionaires’ out in force and prepared to spend more on drinks, to maximise the opportunity, it’s advised that you steer them towards high margin offers to drive profits,” he said.
“Although ‘bomb’ drinks are popular with consumers, long mixed drinks remain the profit and volume opportunity to pubs and bars.
“In some instances outlets are putting too much focus on bomb drinks, which, rather than being an incremental purchase, can become the sole drink for customers which offer smaller margin and volumes.
“It’s important to refocus on long drinks, which will increase spend, average weight of purchase and time spent in outlet, ultimately delivering more profits so outlets should ensure they’re communicating these serves.
“Consumers will generally buy ‘bomb’ drinks anyway if they want them so it’s not necessary to over-promote.”
Global Brands, whose portfolio includes Kick Energy and concentrated energy shot Kick Ultra, also advised bar and nightclub operators to highlight a range of options when it comes to energy drinks.
“Consumers are still spending more when they go out and energy drinks consumers are some of the biggest spenders,” said Global Brands’ marketing director Simon Green.
“Licensees should ensure they are extending the ‘premiumisation’ trend into energy drinks by providing menus with long drinks and ‘bomb’ serves, whilst steering people towards high margin offers to maximise profit and consumer spend in outlet.
“In the on-trade, Kick Energy is the brand to ‘bomb’ and Global Brands is one of the only brand owners to offer a ‘total bomb solution’. With reusable branded bomb cups, separate ‘bomb bars’, Kick Energy and an enviable portfolio of spirits, including Jungfrau herbal liqueur and Goldschlager cinnamon schnapps, we’re best-placed to service the trade in terms of their ‘bomb’ requirements.”
Coca-Cola Enterprises, whose energy brands include Relentless and Monster, advised licensees to ensure energy drinks are clearly visible to customers in their outlet.
“Stocking the best-selling brands is key to ensuring that operators are offering their customers the right range of energy drinks,” said Alan Halliday, field sales director for CCE Scotland.
“Energy drinks in the on-trade are particularly popular with younger 18 to 30 year old adults. Energy is a hugely exciting opportunity for licensees and they should focus on having a tight range of brands that their customers know and trust.”

Image: Red Bull has run a range of incentive programmes for bar staff to highlight its ‘perfect serve’.