Topo Chico is doubling its media budget in the hard seltzer category in May through August and ramping up paid social for the launch of its ready-to-drink (RTD) line Spirited, according to a press release from Molson Coors. These moves come as the company continues to expand beyond beer and marks the fourth line extension in its partnership with The Coca-Cola Company.
Spirited, Molson Coors’ first RTD line made with real spirits, arrives as the overall RTD category continues to grow. The segment posted 53% growth in 2021, which is approximately double the growth of the wine and malt based categories, according to the company.
However, the sector is highly competitive due to the rapid growth rate. AB InBev owns the popular Cutwater Spirits RTD brand, which launched a visual refresh in February, and The Boston Beer Company this week launched Slingers, a line of malt-based RTD cocktails. Increasing media budgets may be necessary to break through the noise, with the effort by Topo Chico signaling the brand may be looking to capture a significant stake in the category.
Spirited will be visually distinct from other alcoholic Topo Chico offerings, coming in 12-ounce standard cans which call out the use of real spirits. Additionally, four packs of the product can be found in the liquor aisle. Three flavors will be available initially, each inspired by a cocktail. The Tequila & Lime flavor is inspired by ranch water, Tequila & Grapefruit by a paloma and Vodka & Lemon, a Chilton. Topo Chico Spirited is set to be sold in 22 states.
The Spirited line is the fourth extension of the Topo Chico partnership between Molson Coors and The Coca-Cola Company since the release of Topo Chico Hard Seltzer in 2021. Other releases include the Topo Chico Hard Seltzer variety pack, Topo Chico Margarita Hard Seltzer variety pack and Topo Chico Ranch Water Hard Seltzer.
As the alcohol industry evolves and beer loses market share, Molson Coors continues to expand its offerings outside of beer in order to future-proof the business.
“This just underscores the evolution of our company,” said Alex Ottenheimer, marketing manager for Topo Chico Spirited, in a statement about the launch.