So a common conversation I hear often begins with “Does marketing work”?
If marketing didn’t work, how did you know about the new shows or movies coming out? What signaled you that the new iPad minis were shipping? Marketing is everywhere from bands to what telephone service you choose.
But in my estimation the greatest marketing out there is that of alcohol. Think about how 90% of adult Americans believe a party must include alcohol. Did you not have fun at your seventh grade birthday party? How did that culture shift happen over time?
Placement, Placement, Placement
We could discuss the last 100 years but for the purpose of this blog, I want to look at a snapshot of today. Alcohol is everywhere, in ads,radio, on television, but more importantly, the product placement of every television show, movie which confirms that alcohol must be present in order to have a “great” party or to have a great meal. Do you know the billions SPENT on that placement is assuring your mind that it’s okay to drink BECAUSE everyone else is doing it?The same principle for Apple phones. It was NOT cool to own a iPhone until your buddies had one and everybody was “owning one”. What is amazing however about alcohol is that its very self loathing. It serves no purpose but to alter your brain into believing that all is good. It later destroys many people and one out of every ten people become alcoholics. Those are not good odds, yet the marketing of this global campaign keeps coming at you like a true brute force and you don’t see it coming.
The beauty behind this marketing is that once you start drinking your body craves more to get you to the next “high” and the distributors are bringing in the finances so they can MARKET again to the up and coming generation. This concept is the same for cocaine users, cigarette smokers, coffee drinkers or any drug abusers. The more staggering fact is that Americans spend $1 for every $100 earned during their lifetime on alcohol. This is anywhere from $100,000-$500,000 PER PERSON. How sweet is that marketing for all liquor companies. So they all fight for your eyes and ears…From Budweiser to Napa Wine to Hard Vodka. Understand that Anheuser-Busch spends $260 million each year on advertising to different markets and another $100 million in new product development. Why would any product need to sell themselves that hard every year? They want every demographic so that it’s “their choice” of beers. Pushing the product in your face year after year finally becomes acceptable. Here is a current list of Anheuser’s offerings in just the Budweiser beer category, not including Michelob:
- Bud Light
- Bud Light Platinum
- Budweiser Select
- Budweiser Select 55
- Bud Ice
- Bud Ice Light
- Budweiser Brew Masters Private Reserve
- Bud Dry
- Bud Silver
- Bud Extra
- Budweiser/Bud Light Chelada
- Budweiser American Ale
- Budweiser NA
- Bud Light Lime
- Bud Light Golden Wheat
- Budweiser 66
The public believes drinking is social, so YOU believe it’s okay to have another. That takes billions of marketing dollars to make that happen.
Most people don’t know when to stop. Their brains get very late signals on what the body is experiencing. There is a certain acceptance from peers and pressure from friends to “have another”. When you start drinking alone, is when the liquor companies have won. There are 27 people a day that die directly from drunk driving in the U.S. and 16,000 per year die in alcohol related crashes, yet Americans approve to have one more. Now that’s marketing.