The 21 Alcohol Brands 21+ Millennials Prefer

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketing

As beer continues to struggle, wine is having a heyday, and cannabis eyes the industry, but what are young consumers considering their favorite alcoholic beverage brands today?

Another year, another round (after round) of bad news for the beer industry. Back in January, Budweiser reportedly lost its crown as the “King of Beers,” dropping to the fourth best-selling beer brand in the U.S.—and Millennials were blamed, as UBS data shows Millennials are less likely to recommend Budweiser than other generations. In May, the Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. beer volume was “sharply lower” for the first quarter of 2018 year-over-year for three major brewing companies: Molson Coors Brewing Co., Anheuser-Busch InBev SA, and Heineken NV. Young consumers were again cited as the root cause. In August, MillerCoors halted production of the beer they made for Millennials—just six months after they launched it. The brew, Two Hats, featured pineapple and lime flavor varieties with low alcohol content and a price point to match. MillerCoors thought the new product would “build the next generation of beer drinkers," but it didn’t pan out.

In the third quarter of 2018, Bud Light reportedly lost .9 percentage points of total market share while Budweiser lost .35. Even the once beloved beer of young hipsters (remember them!?) has fallen on hard times, with Grub Street recently writing that PBR could “go extinct.”

According to AB InBev, beer consumption among 21-27-year-olds dropped from 67% in 2006 to 43% in 2016, and according to Euromonitor, beer consumption among 21-24-year-olds has dipped about 3% per year for the past 15 years. The story is being told again and again: young consumers are switching from beer to spirits and wine, and when they do drink beer, they’re opting for craft brews from…


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Quote of the Day: “Retail should be a facilitator for experience, rather than just selling product.”—Sharmandean Reid, Founder, Wah Nails London (YPulse)

Millennials seeking portable booze are cracking open canned wine. Even though the category still only accounts for less than 1% of the Millennial-favorite alcoholic beverages’ market, Nielsen reports it spiked 69% last year and continues to gain ground. An exec at Delicato Family Wines explains, “Millennials have grown up in a world where consuming wine outdoors—or any location outside of the traditional table—is more acceptable than generations past.” (Wine Spectator)

Summer camps are cropping up to teach kids how to become YouTubers. At I-D Tech Camps, Level Up, and Star Camps, kids can learn all about how to, as the latter puts it, “Become an Internet sensation.” They offer courses in how to create and post videos, from shooting clips to editing audio, and how to build their personal brand. But don’t worry, most are framing YouTubing as a hobby, not a career, and setting kids’ expectations accordingly. (WSJ)

A new bill could change the free-to-play profit model that’s made games like Fortnite top earners. Senators have proposed the official ban of “loot boxes,” or items that players can buy (and sometimes must buy) to win a video game, often gambling on what’s inside. Senator Ed Markey explains that “Inherently manipulative game features that take advantage of kids and turn play time into pay time should be out of bounds.” For some, this will eliminate a key revenue stream and open the door to review other in-game purchases.  (The Verge)

A social media overhaul upped Corn Nuts’ sales by 12%—with no paid support.The snack’s sales were stagnant before a new exec took over their Twitter, infusing it with the personable tone food brands have become known for (and sometimes notorious for). Since then, followers spiked from 650 to 21,000, and what they’re calling a “scrappy” strategy “absolutely translated to sales,” reporting that retail sales spiked 12% and Millennials’ repeat purchases rose the same percentage. (Marketing Dive)

The retail apocalypse continues, with 7,000 more stores closing their doors in 2019. CoStar Group estimates that the square footage of retail space closed has topped its own record each year since 2017, and this year they’re “predicting more of the same.” PayLess ShoeSource, Gymboree, Dressbarn, and Charlotte Russe lead the list of number stores planned to shutter this year, as retailers learn to scale down size and up Experiencification for young shoppers. (Business Insider

Quote of the Day: “It’s a really interesting time at the moment in catalog [music]…Sometimes, it’s a question of how we make something out of nothing.”—Tim Fraser-Harding, President, Global Catalogue, Recorded Music at Warner Music Group (Rolling Stone)

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