Anyone who reads anything about the beverage and alcohol industry knows that ready-to-drink beverages are having a moment. They’ve been around for decades, but have seen a surge in recent years. According to Nielsen, as of April 2019, RTD spirits-based cocktail were up 40.7% from the year prior. And RTD wine-based cocktail sales were up 41.9% from 2018.
Why are RTDs so successful? There are a slew of reasons, but RTDs touch on three key things the millennial audience is looking for in everything they buy:
- Convenience & Portability: In an ‘always-on-the-go’ culture, we’re all looking for convenience in our lives. Whether that’s grocery delivery, online shopping or cocktails in a can, these small things make a huge difference. The can is a go-to, easy to transport, easy to recycle option. It’s essentially spill proof and allowed in all the places glass containers aren’t (i.e. the park or poolside).
- Affordable Luxury: According to a recent Mintel study, 55% of Americans prefer drinking at home. This can be for a long list of reasons, but 69% say the need or desire to save money is a major factor. At the same time, millennials are all about experiences and want to treat themselves and their sophisticated palettes.
The craft beer craze changed our perception of quality drinks in a can. It’s much more acceptable for a premium beverage to come from a can, including hand-crafted cocktails or wine. A cocktail in your average bar could cost $10-15, but given the same premium experience in a can for just a few dollars, millennials will pounce.
- Share-ability: The convenience of RTDs make it easy to share with friends poolside, but many RTD brands have put emphasis on package design, making them “Instagrammable” too. Millennials are always connected and highly influential. When they find a product, they are more than willing share with their friends. Creating an eye-catching package design for social media has become just as vital as the product inside the package.
Millennials are pushing for innovation to serve their needs, which means how we market to them is changing, too. Check out our latest work in alcohol packaging design.