COMMENT: Diageo rides the Atkins craze
Diageo, the maker of Smirnoff, has announced a string of US national cable ads with a simple message - zero carbs. As the fight for the Atkins dollar gets fiercer, spirit and beer marketers alike have begun to position their products as low-carb and diet-friendly.
With an estimated 32 million carb-conscious Americans spending $2.5 billion a year on low-carb foods, alcohol promoters are being prompted to incorporate the now mainstream diet into their marketing campaigns. Requests by the National Consumers League for more information on spirits labels, including calories and ingredients, also indicates the increasing nutrition consciousness of consumers.
Diageo is jumping on the Atkins bandwagon - a string of national cable ads, starting just in time for the holiday season, position Smirnoff as a no-carb alternative. The ads, prompted by a consumer survey that found 63% incorrectly thought spirits like vodka and whisky had more carbs than beer or wine, show Smirnoff being poured into a shot glass while words on the screen proclaim "zero carbs". Smirnoff has also launched a website, lowcarbparties.com and hired Ted Allen, wine and food expert from the hit show Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, to promote the low-carb content of
Spirit makers are also targeting bartenders to offer 'skinny' versions of holiday-themed drinks. Allied Domecq, which makes Kahlua, is encouraging bartenders to offer White Russians made with skim milk instead of regular milk. To create buzz, the drink is being debuted at Hollywood parties and some hip hair salons.
Beer marketers do not want to be left behind either. As the market becomes inundated with low-carb beers, marketing campaigns are emerging as key determinants of success. In an effort to identify itself with an active and healthy lifestyle, Michelob Ultra will become the official beer of the PGA and LPGA golf tours next year.
As the fight for a slice of the low-carb pie continues, maybe Atkins-endorsements like the Atkins approved Friday's menu will become a major weapon in a marketing battle that is likely to last for years.
The global roll-out of InBev's Brazilian beer, Brahma, adds a third premium brand to the global brewer's international portfolio but some observers have suggested it's an unnecessary step which threat...
The US consumer goods group Fortune Brands has confirmed it is in talks about launching a joint bid with Pernod Ricard for Allied Domecq....
Diageo is to launch a new global advertising campaign for Smirnoff Ice. The first ad in the global campaign, 'Garden', launches in Great Britain on April 11th on terrestrial and satellite TV. ...
Fideuram Wargny has upgraded its rating of Pernod Ricard to 'buy' from 'hold'. Its analysts argue that the merger talks with Allied Domecq is a catalyst for share growth....
Diageo has completed another share buyback transaction....
Diageo's Smirnoff Signatures line of premixed cocktails is now available nationwide in the US....
Diageo is poised to cut back its presence in Germany, according to local reports....
Heineken has acquired a 40% stake in a Chinese brewery....
- Comment - The Appeal and Perils of Craft
- Review of the Year 2014 - Part IV: Spirits
- Time is Right for Refresco Gerber Exit
- just the Ten - Top News Stories of 2014
- Review of the Year 2014 - Part II: Beer & Cider
- Belvédère to sell assets, streamline portfolio
- Belvedere vodka tie-up over new James Bond film
- Diageo ups focus on China with Mortlach roll-out
- Brown-Forman eyeing Scotch, Irish whisk(e)y entry?
- Diageo rolls out Beckham's Haig Club to US
- Global vodka insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends research
- Global Scotch whisky insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends research
- The IWSR Forecast Report - 2014-2019 Global Review
- Global Tequila Market 2014-2018
- Global market review of non-Scotch whiskies – forecasts to 2018