I think I should admit from the start that I do not drink alcohol. 30 years ago it was something to talk about. Nowadays I find myself part of a group that is increasing in size every year. The only difference between me and these newcomers is that I have an alcohol intolerance. For the others, it is a matter of choice.
It would appear that the traditional weekend of youngsters has changed to a degree. Binge drinking is falling out of fashion and more upmarket drinks are considered as the first choice. Whether it will continue is unknown, but it shows a trend that is common in email marketing. Things change and we need to respond.
Makers of lagers that are not, I am assured, of gold star quality have seen a significant drop in sales over the last few years. This is despite value sales dropping only marginally. It seems clear that people are willing to pay more for products of better quality. Should your next email marketing campaign focus on the product’s worth rather than its cost?
The lager war is at a fascinating stage. On one side we have Carlesbrg, saying their old lager was probably not the best in the world, as if this was a surprise. They are pushing the ‘new, improved’ version, complete with new name, to try for the more upmarket market. It is now a pilsner and, equally importantly, has Danish ancestry.
It’s a brave move, one that you would not take in email marketing unless there was lots of evidence to support the risk being worth it. The Carlesberg name is still prominent and some might feel this is just a marketing gimmick.
Fosters has taken a different route, one that is equally risky. You might think that a new start requires a visit to the free email marketing template library, but not for them. They’ve gone back to their successful Brad and Dan ‘no trouble’ adverts. Their ‘let’s have some fun’ campaign is diametrically opposite to Carlesberg’s going up-market approach.
I’ve no idea which will succeed, if indeed only one will. The, let’s say, basic lager market is still massive; it has merely shrunk a bit. Fosters might think that with the rather depressing national news, a concentration on simple solutions will be a worthwhile counterpoint.
Would rebranding or reverting to the successful campaigns of old be useful for you? Both carry significant risks. Previous layouts and colours of marketing emails from a few years ago have two points in their favour. They might well reassure those who have been subscribers to your email marketing lists for some time, while those who have joined recently will see it as new.
On the other hand, there’s something to be said for launching a new product that is moving with the times. Carlsberg are probably assuming the fall in sales of basic lagers is something that will continue.
The lesson email marketing can take from the lager war is that there is always more than one option available. Which is better? We’ll know in time.