Keep pace to win youth vote

Drinks range should reflect new trends and products, firms say

Keeping up with trends and new drinks brands and styles is key to targeting young adults.

KEEPING pace with new trends and tweaking your drinks range accordingly is key for operators seeking to target the fickle young adult market, according to drinks firms contacted by SLTN.

With a constant stream of new products coming onto the market and different styles of drinks finding favour with younger consumers, the pressure is on for operators to keep up with the changes.
Danish speciality spirit Fisk is one of the brands currently pitched at the young adult market.
Parent company United Drinks said the brand has established a strong following in Scandinavia and Europe – and it’s confident it can replicate that in Scotland.
“Tastes have changed from more traditional drinks like gin and tonics to drinks like shots and energy drinks or a combination of the two,” said United Drinks managing director Thomas Anthon.
Changing tastes and young adults’ willingness to try new flavours has also been cited as the motivation behind The Famous Grouse’s latest innovation, Ginger Grouse.
“It’s all about keeping the brand relevant for a new and younger demographic and adjusting to the drinking occasion,” said Peter Sandstrom of Maxxium UK, distributor of The Famous Grouse.
Sandstrom highlighted summer as a particularly good time to introduce new serves aimed at the young adult demographic.
“Ginger Grouse has identified a sunny day as an occasion where 20-40 year olds are most likely to trial a new product,” he added.
Shifting trends among younger drinkers don’t always require a change of stock, however.
Instead, publicans can adapt the way they promote and serve young adult brands, said Debs Carter, marketing director for WKD at SHS Drinks.
“The emergence of the popularity of the RTD cocktail is probably one of the biggest overall trends we are seeing amongst young adult consumers at the moment,” she said.
“It’s a trend which provides an excellent growth opportunity from a licensee’s perspective on a number of fronts: RTD cocktails offer good incremental margins, there’s the in-outlet theatre which consumers can’t get at home, and there’s scope for bars to create their own signature cocktails, which create a point of difference.”
Carter also stressed the importance of social media in communicating with young adult customers.
For a young demographic she described as “communications-savvy”, Carter said regular interaction between consumers and brands is seen as the norm.
WKD isn’t the only brand using social media to communicate with young adult consumers.
Nicole Goodwin, UK group marketing manager for Jagermeister, said social media plays a key role in the brand’s marketing activity.
“For the vast majority of young adults, social media is part of their day to day routine, with Facebook being one of the most popular sites,” she said.
“Incorporating social media into an outlet’s business offers opportunities both to promote offers and gain feedback.”

Image – Keeping up with trends and new drinks brands and styles is key to targeting young adults.