Alcohol brands have been facing a triple whammy lately:

  1. Traditionally heavy investors in TV ads, the channel is losing viewer share.
  2. Many younger consumers are turning away from alcohol itself.
  3. The pandemic closed bars, distancing consumers further from the tipples.

Constellation Brands, an agency representing beer, wine and spirit brands, is fighting back by tilting toward connected and streaming TV – now it just needs to measure the impact.

CTV can offset decline

“For our brands at Constellation, the role of connected TV in a lot of cases is to offset some of the reach declines we’re seeing in linear TV,” says Amy D’Souza, Constellation’s Senior Director, Media & Digital Marketing, in this video interview with Beet.TV.

“Linear TV has played an important role for broad-reach brands like Corona and Modelo in the past.

“But, as those ratings are declining, the investments that we’re making in linear continue to contribute to increased frequency and reach is starting to plateau more aggressively as those ratings decline.

“As those ratings declines happen over time, we continue to increase our investment and our overall share towards streaming platforms to really help continue to deliver that broad reach and scale that a lot of our bigger brands are looking looking for.”

Alcohol’s audience challenge

Alcohol brands’ challenge has been crystalized by new research out this month from Zenith. It says:

  • Alcohol brands spent 49% of their ad budget on TV in 2020, compared to 24% for brands on average.
  • That tactic is waning as younger consumers, particularly, shift away to digital.
  • Alcohol brands upped their digital spending from 21% of budgets in 2019 to 24% in 2020, including enhancing websites, creating content and enlisting influencers.
  • D2C alcohol sales are expected to continue after the pandemic.

Zenith predicts alcohol brands will reduce their expenditure on television by 2.4% a year to 2023, compared to the 2019 baseline, upping spend on out-oh-home.

Alcohol ad spending shrank by twice as much as ad spend overall during 2020, by 11.6%, but will now grow by 5.3% in 2021, Zenith says.

Holistic measurement quest

As more spending is put into connected TV, Constellation’s D’Souza wants to find proof of effectiveness.

So she is using technology like Amobee’s CTV Allocator, which forecasts incremental reach to a linear TV schedule across the ecosystem’s largest CTV supply space.

“We’re investing in technology partners and platforms more as a test and learn approach this year to be able to get a better view of how our media is performing holistically across all of the various channels.

“The pandemic has, has caused us to reevaluate our processes that have been historically more rigid and more annual-based. And how do we be more nimble and agile in how we go to market taking advantage of what’s going on in culture right now?”

You are watching “Optimizing a Rapidly Converging TV & Video Marketplace: What’s Next,” a Beet.TV leadership series presented by Amobee. For more videos, please visit this page.