How can restaurants and bars put the fizz back into on-site alcohol sales?

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06 Dec 2017 --- The New York City-based Beverage Marketing Corporation has published a new report claiming slow consumer traffic at on-premise locations, coupled with stagnancy in occasions for beverages is leading to flat total alcohol volumes in restaurants and bars this year.

According to the corporate consulting company’s recently released On-Premise Intelligence Report, which was jointly developed by Technomic, brand marketers and restaurant and bar businesses are challenged by finding new growth opportunities for adult alcoholic drink sales. 

The on-premise channel is crucial to adult beverage brand development and sales success. The latest intelligence report provides on-premise industry pros with category and brand performance metrics, operator insights and projections for where the on-premise channel is headed.

It also includes deep on-premise consumer insights derived from Technomic’s Drinker Archetypes. This multi-phased psychographic segmentation model analyzes on-premise consumers to uncover their unique personalities and behaviors, key occasion attributes, drink preference and more.

Key report findings include:

  • Adult beverage category dynamics continue to evolve, with spirits outpacing beer in volume growth.
  • Wine is challenged, experiencing its fourth consecutive year of volume decline on-premise in 2017.
  • Year-end dollar sales are expected to increase 2.1 percent, driven primarily by raised drink prices and continued growth of premium products at the bar.
  • The appeal of differentiated and flavorful adult beverages and the importance of supplier support is evident in the roster of fastest-growing brands on-premise, led by Tito’s Handmade Vodka.

The report also helps to identify new product, drink and occasion opportunities, a key element to growing drink sales. 

“Growth categories remain aged spirits – whiskey, brandy, cognac and aged rum – while vodka volume is down slightly,” said Eric Schmidt, director, alcohol research at Beverage Marketing Corporation. 

“In beer, imports and craft are gaining share, propelled by Mexican brands and smaller craft labels. We are tracking mixed results from leading domestic table wine brands, while imported sparkling wine continues to find relevance at the bar.”

While volume growth is elusive, drinks remain an important aspect of going out for consumers, according to Donna Hood Crecca, associate principal at Technomic. 

“Consumers prioritize adult beverages, with one-third overall and half of those aged 21 to 34 confirming that the drink offering influences their decision of where to go,” she said. 

“Today, consumers have more choices, as venues ranging from sports stadiums to winery and brewery tasting rooms are in the consideration set, which raises the bar for traditional locations like restaurants. Improving and differentiating the drink experience is key to success.”

Capturing the moment and associating new occasions for alcoholic drinks could unlock potential sales growth, as evidenced in other food and drink categories. 

FoodIngredientsFirst recently published a Special Report detailing how “moment do matter” for brands trying to tap into growth potential. Read more here. 

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