In recent years, both premium and ultra-premium tequilas have grown significantly in the United States spirits marketplace. Consumer demand for higher-end tequila products will only increase further as more people learn about the different offerings and taste similarities that aged or añejo tequilas can have with a premium scotch or brandy. In a recent Forbes article, Greg Cohen who handled global brand communications for Patrón tequila for 12 years, talks about how marketing and perception played a major role in Patrón’s success. He states that, “the best marketing in the world isn’t going to be effective if you don’t have a quality product in the first place. People might like the ads, they might like the bottle design, but most importantly for any spirit to be successful, people have to enjoy what they’re drinking.”
Cohen also goes on to say that although certain brands are currently dominating the Tequila market, there is still plenty of room for growth and new entrants. Tequila only makes up 1% of the total global spirits market which means there are plenty of opportunities for tequila companies to become well established, especially in countries outside of the U.S.
The two key ways for brands to gain a following in the tequila industry are by innovating and educating. A hurdle that brands will have to face is changing the perception of consumers who see tequila as a bad-hangover, party drink. The reason for this image is that popular brands such as Jose Cuervo are not 100% agave tequila but instead a “mixto” meaning a mix of tequila and other spirits. These mixtos can leave you feeling horrible and hungover after a night of drinking which has created a negative association for all other brands and types of tequila. To be considered a “true tequila,” the label must say “100% agave” which you will find on all premium and ultra-premium bottles.
For tequila brands to be successful with a wider audience, they must change public perception by educating consumers about the quality of premium tequilas. This can be done by hosting events which both educate consumers and boost awareness of the offering.
If you would like to know more about branding, effective messaging, and how Oster and Associates can help market your business, schedule a free consultation today.