Portland Marketing Analytics (PortMA) | Portland, Maine

Going for Deep Segmentation in Spirits Event Marketing

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Going for Deep Segmentation in Event MarketingIf you read my blog posts regularly (okay, semi-regularly… once in a blue moon?) you know that much of my research is in the spirits industry. Whiskey, vodka, liqueur, you name it. Almost all spirits brand teams want to know how certain metrics differ by events at on-premise and off-premise accounts. It is important to make the distinction between the two when reporting the impact of an event marketing program. It is equally important to identify the specific types of venues within the two categories to make analysis more actionable.

Many spirits programs include events at both on- and off-premise venues.

The two categories are different because consumers visiting on-premise accounts are likely to eat and drink there. Consumers visiting off-premise accounts are likely to purchase products to take home.

The brand being measured can frame assumptions at the start of the program as to whether purchase intent will be stronger among consumers at on-premise or off-premise events. For example, purchase intent for a ready-to-serve mixer may be expected to be higher at off-premise venues. Purchase intent for rum may be higher at on-premise venues.

Suppose that assumption is correct.

We would recommend that the client activate for that brand at more on-premise accounts in the future. If on- and off-premise are the only categorized venues in the research, you may be missing an opportunity for additional insights. It can be even more helpful to understand at what types of on-premise venues the brand resonates most. It can often be worth your while to break down on-premise and off-premise venues by types.

On-premise Venues

  • Bar
  • Restaurant
  • Lounge
  • Night Club

Off-premise Venues

  • Grocery Store
  • Convenience Store
  • Liquor Store

When segmenting by on-premise venue gave actionable results.

We worked at an on-premise event marketing program last summer where we measured the impact of a sampling experience on purchase intent. Brand teams activated at two different venue types: bars and restaurants.

Survey results indicated that the impact of sampling on purchase intent was stronger among consumers at restaurants than at bars. Restaurant customers sampled were 19 percentage points more likely to purchase than those who weren’t. There was only an eight percentage point difference at bars.

We concluded that the cocktail selection, paired with food, drew more attention to the brand than providing a cocktail sample by itself at a bar. This insight would not have been noticed had we not differentiated between bars and restaurants in the survey.

I recommend identifying all relevant venue categories and types in the event marketing research. On the agency side, urge your analytic team to give generate more insightful information by doing so.

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