Telling the Tale: Two Beverage Brands That Get it Right

Today’s consumers are savvier than ever, with ever-increasing access to their favorite brands via social media. Marketers are tasked with identifying their target customer and developing a strategy that tells the authentic story of their brand. From gender-specific marketing to retelling a historic tale of an iconic brand, below are two examples of beverage brands that tell their story well.

Should brands segment their marketing based on gender? We know that  females account for 55% of American wine drinkers. Additionally, women are directly responsible for over 80% of wine purchases by volume in the US, according to Beverage Media.  If that’s the case, certainly beverage brands want the attention of the female consumer.

The question is not why to market to women, but how?

But, the question is not why to market to women, but how? It’s obvious that marketers want to target women, but one must be careful not to be too kitschy and alienate segments of their female consumer group. Do not underestimate your customer. According to Ed Barden, Director of Marketing at Excelsior Wines, “Women don’t want to bring a stereotype to the table.” Brands like Little Black Dress, Happy Bitch and Mommy’s Time Out can undervalue the consumer. Women are multi-faceted. It’s impossible to precisely pinpoint the female American wine consumer.

Wise marketers know there are sub-segments of all consumer groups, and the best way to target them is to avoid developing sub brands that simply target small sectors. The most successful marketing campaigns will be educational and informative, teaching the consumer and helping them relate to your brand.

Patrón is implementing this tactic with their current marketing strategy.  They don’t divide their consumers based on gender. They boast the aspirational aspects of the brand as well as the authenticity and the history. And though they admittedly call this marketing strategy “Bros & Knows” – it’s not really about targeting male and female. As Lee Applebaum, CMO at Patrón, told Beverage Dynamics, “The Bros are not just guys. They are consumer interested in the swagger…of the brand” while the Knows “are the customers who are first and foremost interested in [the brand’s] story.” People aren’t just drinking Patrón tequila, they are embracing the brand and incorporating it as an aspect of their own personal style. Applebaum sums it up, “It’s a badge of value walking up to the bar and ordering Patrón.” Can the same thing be said of your brand?

Patrón tequila tells their tale: We didn’t invent tequila, we just perfected it.

Another example of marketing that stresses this point of authenticity and history comes from Wild Turkey and their recent announcement of Matthew McConoughey as brand ambassador. As the New York Times reported, McConoughey is not just the face of the brand, he will also serve as Creative Director. He will have a hand in writing and directing the commercials, plus he is actively involved in recording the music for each spot. The Oscar winner told the New York Times: “I don’t want to be just a face. I have ideas…The great news is that Wild Turkey hasn’t changed in all these years — it’s totally authentic. And that appeals to millennials. Because they can smell fake.”

Notice McConoughey’s use of the word authentic. It’s no accident. Like Patrón, Wild Turkey is sticking to their roots and retelling the story of their brand. Wise marketers know that successful campaigns will tell a story, whether it’s the history of the brand or the tale of a female winemaker who overcame all the odds to get to where she is today.  Be genuine. Your customers will reject inauthenticity.

Telling the Tale: Wild Turkey Bourbon enlists McConoughey as Creative Director.

Have you seen a great beverage marketing campaign recently? Share your favorites in the comment section below.

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