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Beverage Marketing Strategies for 2021

Good news out of Pennsylvania: at the end of 2020, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board approved over $2 million in grants to promote locally-made malt and brewed beverages. The goal of these grants is to boost the Pennsylvania beer and wine industry with marketing and research programs.

Other states have taken up the trend, like New York’s $3 Million “Raising the Bar” initiative. While this is a great first step for the state, breweries, wineries, and distilleries around the country are wondering how they can best market their products coming into 2021.

Refocusing Your Marketing Goals


Set Specific Marketing Objectives

Awareness, building brand loyalty, and consumer engagement are always top of mind when creating a marketing plan. Audiences do not wait to be presented with an ad before they buy something, your marketing must be ever-present. If you have not done so already, focus your marketing efforts on social medial, email, and other online content.

Over the last year, social media use has increased dramatically, and your media mix needs to reflect these changes. While traditional advertising efforts such as billboards and bus stops are not gone, online ads are dominating right now.

Set Team Goals

Many companies have needed to make staffing changes over the last year. As you prepare to move into 2021, don’t wait for the pandemic to pass to make goals and structural changes to your team. Retain and if necessary, re-train your employees and pull your team together to fule creativity and amp up your team.

Point of Purchase Displays

In past blogs, we’ve talked about how important point of purchase displays are when face to face customer interaction is limited. Every minute your displays interact with customers is important. Make the best use of these displays to catch your customers’ attention. Learn more about how you can customize unique POP displays here.

Including Alcohol To-Go Orders

This year, many states adopted or altered their positions for to-go alcohol sales. While some may revert these orders once the pandemic is lifted, no one knows for sure when it will be completely safe to return to pre-pandemic business, and other states have made these alcohol delivery options permanent. Keep these and other new initiatives in mind when creating a plan for 2021.

Most Importantly – Consider Your Company Voice

2020 was rough. We all hope that 2021 will be a bit gentler, but so far, we can’t guarantee anything. Marketing products have looked very different over the last year – especially when it comes to alcohol. That’s why it is very important to consider your tone of voice.

Sure, a meme about drinking to get through the pandemic and social isolation might be funny for personal use or certain brands, but it’s not the message liquor distributors should adopt. As we have in decades past, drinking responsibly and safely should be at the top of mind when marketing our industry’s products.

Think of it this way: it is perfectly acceptable if not expected to mention the pandemic in advertising, but be careful not to voice your marketing efforts in a way that might be glamorizing unhealthy habits.

For more tips and industry trends, visit our blog page or follow Creative Barrel on LinkedIn.

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