- AB InBev announced Monday it is launching its first brand marketed exclusively to female consumers, according to Business Insider. The drink will be a revamped version of the company's Lime-A-Rita beverage line.
- AB InBev will market the line as a brand "for women, by women," with the marketing team, brewers and agency partners behind the re-launch all women. Lime-A-Rita's commercial campaign also is directed by Tricia Brock, a "Gossip Girl", "Orange is the New Black" and "Girls" alum.
- Since AB InBev launched Bud Light Lime-A-Rita in 2012, women have represented 65% of the brand's buyers despite the company's neutral marketing strategy. AB InBev hopes the redesign will help capitalize on the popularity of sweet beer alternatives and hard sodas — drink categories that are surging in the alcoholic beverage space, particularly among female consumers.
Beer campaigns have typically been geared toward men, with commercials featuring guys drinking pints while scantily clad women stand nearby. This is likely because, as Nielsen data shows, only about 36% of American women say they drink beer, compared to 38% that drink spirits and another 56% that drink wine.
Still, women have historically been ignored by beer companies, even when they are the primary buyers of certain beverage lines — as was the case with AB InBev's Lime-A-Rita. Because of this, the company is shifting its campaign strategy to cater to its female consumers, rather than passively benefit from their spending.
Beer companies will need to do more than simply change up their advertising strategies if they want to lure female consumers. Beverage makers should look for opportunities to invest in the creation of hard sodas and sweetened beer alternatives, categories that perform well among American women. With more than a third of females drinking beer, women also could be attractive to suds makers who are looking for new sources of growth amid an industry-wide slowdown.
Revamping existing brands is another viable strategy to extend a brand's reach. The success of MillerCoors's Henry's Hard Soda Line, for example, led to the company's re-launch of Zima, a malt beverage popular in the '90s that performed well with female consumers.