Social Media Resources

Objective: As part of our study we were asked to understand how shoppers 18-29 make decision when purchasing spirits. We wanted to understand their logic when purchasing, and specifically how interaction with social media, new technologies, and apps can influence their decision making.  We know that consumer trends can change rapidly, and we didn’t want to conduct research that would become easily outdated. Our goal was to create social media tools for the Marketing department that would permit them to observe consumers and other brands long term. 

Strategy : We decided to conduct first hand research in the area of social media in order to better understand how other brands are connecting with this generation, what strategies seem to be working, and how the consumers themselves are using social media sites and new technologies to interact with brands and to make decisions when buying.

Why we Chose Twitter and Pinterest? 

According to a recent Pew study, both networks attract predominantely 18-29 year olds, while Facebook has a much older audience. While Pinterest has a majority of users who are female, Twitter is heavily used by Men. Thus creating a page on both sites allowed us to accurately profile the entire demograpic.  Another social media site that fits well with both alcohol companies and this demographic is Instagram, but this activity is easily followed via Twitter, and an account would not have created value for the study.

social media audience

Methodology: We created our own social accounts for the study and began interacting with other brands, and observing consumers.  In the case of both Twitter and Pinterest we decided that it was in the best interest of the study to create our own page because the profiles we created can serve as tools for the marketing department in the future. We also used Facebook to observe competitors community building activities and engagement strategies, but did not feel that creating an account would create added value.

I) Twitter

It became clear early on in our study that alcohol companies worldwide have begun using Twitter as a means of diffusing brand information, engaging consumers, and promoting events. We created a Twitter account which we used to follow over 40 influential alcohol brands (heavily weighted towards Vodka producers ). This account will continue to serve as a tool for the Marketing Deptrtment in the future, allowing them to have up the the minute press releases and breaking news from companies like Pernod Ricard, Grey Goose, or Ketel One as well as to see how these companies use Twitter to generate interest among consumers.

Twitter account

Q: Who did we follow? 

We wanted to gather industry information directly from other companies, but we also wanted to see how different brands market the same product internationally. For example, we chose to follow Abosolute Vodka in Canada, the United States, and in  Mexico to learn more about how a brand can use Music partnerships or local artists to promote the same product cross-culturally. We also followed Beefeater Gin in London, Firefly in the United States, and other companies located throughout Europe and even in South America.  The account is a great way to get fresh ideas from other markets that could be adapted to France.


What did we learn? 
There seem to be five main strategies that companies on Twitter are using to engage fans.
    1)Instagram – Companies that are highly active on Twitter are also heavy users of Instagram.  Absolut Vodka in Mexico for example often puts up photos of their events on Instagram and then posts the link on Twitter. This pushes their followers to check out the Instagram account. The site also has an app which means it is easy to use for smartphone users, and the content can be easily reshared.
    2)Youtube– Several Alcohol companies we followed share a new song at least once a week. For example, they will choose a song for going out that evening and they post the link from YouTube to their account. Some companies have their own channel but not always, this is more about just keeping your audience entertained and connecting the brand with the latest popular songs.
    3)Partnering with influential People on Twitter– to increase their reach on the network brands like Ciroc partner with individuals who have a lot of followers on Twitter. They will offer for example to give a prize to one of the fans of this particular follower. This allows Ciroc to engage a group of people who is not already following them and to promote their products.
    4) Drink Recipes – Companies on the network regularly post new drink recipes, and they also regularly ask fans what they are drinking. Fans seem to love this. You see responses from several fans with their favorite drinks or their new ideas for drinks. Here is a recent example :
    5) Announcing Events – This is probably the number one way that companies use Twitter in this sector. They constantly post about events that will happen later in the week, ticket giveaways, or information about artisits or DJ’s who will be performing at their next event. This is a good way to get fans to come out and have a drink. The events allow them to tweet to their network, but also to tweet to the networks of any DJ’s, artisits, or clubs that they will be partnering with.
II) Pinterest
Why Pinterest? Because it is consumer generated and it gave us an idea of what is trending. We decided to follow the most pinned, most popular drink recipes around Pinterest and to create ” Boards” with themes like “Vodka Cocktails”, “Appetizers”  or “Seasonal Drink Ideas”.  Pinterest is a powerful social media tool for a marketing department because it allows you to get first hand, real – time information on what consumers like or dislike, and is a great place to find new drink ideas, marketing inspiration, or even new product ideas. 


Pinterest Boards

Q: Who did we follow?

We collected popular recipes onto our boards, gauged by repins, which led us to a group of people we call “influencers”. The people who can influence everyone else, who have a lot of followers, whose ideas are heavily shared. These users are highly active, and their pins tend to be highly shared , so we followed them.  We also looked up other alcohol brands like Maker’s Mark Whiskey or Absolut Vodka and followed their accounts. This strategy sets up an automatic feed for the marketing department of their new pins and brand shares. It is a great way to monitor what other companies are sharing, what new ideas are popular, and to explore new marketing ideas.


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