The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Top trends and developments in RTDs for the on-premise

CGA by NIQ’s Drew Hummel shares expert RTD analysis for on-premise suppliers and operators.

Experiential and airport bars among the hotspots

Research for CGA by NIQ’s Channel Strategy Report found that nearly a quarter (24%) of consumers would drink RTDs in experiential bars – making them the top channel, ahead of outlets like airport bars (22%), nightclubs (20%), golf clubs (19%) and music and art festivals (17%). The convenience of RTDs is particularly appealing in these sub-channels.

Drinkers are active, affluent and experimental

Who is the RTD drinker? CGA’s On Premise User Survey indicates an even split in gender and a skewing towards younger drinkers, with 40% of them aged under 34. They are relatively affluent, spending an average of $212 in the on-premise per month – much more than the $160 average among all consumers. They are ready to try new drinks too, with an average of 22 brands in their drinks repertoires.

Opportunities in group serves

Group occasions offer some of the highest potential for RTDs. Nearly half (48%) of RTD drinks consume the category when catching up with friends, and 38% do so for celebrations. Positioning bulk RTD purchases as an option for groups can be a good way to generate trial and loyalty.

Bartenders recognise the value

CGA by NIQ’s Global Bartender Report highlights the value of the category to teams on the frontline of sales. More than a third (35%) of bartenders at premium venues have seen an increase in serves over the last year, with consumer demand, convenience and consistency the three top reasons for stocking. However, bartenders are also clear that RTDs are an additional option rather than a substitute for hand-crafted cocktails.

ABV is important

Consumers’ focus on alcohol moderation and value is making the ABV of RTDs an attractive factor. Two thirds (65%) of bartenders say it’s important or very important to RTD selection.

Bartenders need education too

As well as educating consumers, suppliers need to help bartenders increase their knowledge of RTDs. While more than nine in ten (93%) told the Global Bartender Report that they rate themselves as experts or very knowledgeable on cocktails, only a third (34%) do so on RTDs. More than one in five are interested in learning more, so there is a great opportunity for brands to deliver ambassador activities.

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