Pernod Ricard UK has embarked on a new drive to help more bars, restaurants and pubs to offer cocktails through a new service offering bespoke menus.
Working with leading software designers, MRM Design Studio, it has introduced the Menu Creator app that its business development and sales teams will use with on-trade customers to develop cocktail lists.
Aimed especially at restaurants and pubs that are not yet offering cocktails, it has been introduced in time for Christmas when people are more likely to experiment with drinks and trade up to premium spirits.
New research commissioned by Pernod Ricard UK reveals consumers are willing to spend an additional 12% on a cocktail at Christmas: £8.74 instead of £7.83 the rest of the year.
Mark Harris, channel director for Pernod Ricard UK, said: “We know a £30.1million opportunity exists for cocktails this Christmas. However, this number can rise to as much as £50.7million if outlets are able to encourage trade-up into premium spirits.
“69% of cocktail drinkers are looking to experiment in the weeks before Christmas and 53% are likely to trade up, so there’s a huge opportunity for the on-trade to drive sales by enticing a broad spectrum of cocktail lovers.”
With all kinds of fonts, layouts and exclusive designs, the app assists customers with personalised menus, mainly using Pernod Ricard UK brands which include Absolut vodka, Havana Club rum, Malibu, Kahlúa, Plymouth Gin, Monkey 47 gin, Chivas Regal whisky and Jameson whiskey.
For its Christmas ad campaign “Mix with the Good Stuff” in retail, it is focusing on three signature serves: an Espresso Martini with Kahlúa and Absolut, Jameson Ginger & Lime, and Plymouth Gin and tonic.
From November, the app can also be used as a direct ordering system for point-of-sale materials linked to campaigns such as “Mix with the Good Stuff”.
Mark added: “We know consumers are willing to spend more at Christmas, so it’s essential venues do as much as they can to entice sporadic drinkers, and our latest research has shown menus to be the most influential marketing tool.
“This year, we’re offering our customers a complete cocktail solution by not only providing premium brands but also expert advice and a practical app to help drive sales.
“Bars have traditionally been the heartland for cocktails, but opportunities also exist to leverage cocktails in both pubs and food-led establishments, by offering them as a Christmas treat with friends or a great after-dinner alternative.”
Cocktails are worth £500million to the on-trade and are stocked in a third of outlets, up 33% versus two years ago.
The research also reveals that, aside from price, the description and details about the types of spirits they contain are the most influential factors when choosing a cocktail.