As millennials come to age, numerous sectors such as the alcoholic beverage industry are seeing major consumption changes.The professional millennial cohort is the agent of change in this industry.The social work culture with after hours drinks are the new norm for this non-materialistic generation. The digital natives are constantly sharing their life experiences through social media channels and these experiences are shared with alcoholic beverages, representing a social status. With these factors influencing the drinking choices of millennials, the question remain on what type of alcoholic beverage are they consuming and what drinking establishments are they visiting? qSample conducted a survey to understand millennials’ alcoholic beverage preferences. The survey was deployed to more than 500 respondents on their drinking choices and confirmed the correlation between drinking preferences and the generational mindset.
The data shows that 50% of older professional millennials, ages 27-33 are consuming alcoholic beverages in restaurants. In contrast, only 8% percent of this group is consuming alcoholic beverages at home.This highly sociable age demographic combines their social gathering with alcohol consumption.When visiting restaurant establishments, (74%) of older millennials are often ordering alcoholic beverages when dining out. As this demographic enters the peak of their careers, their disposable income increases, given them the ability to spend their income on luxury items such as alcoholic beverages. Despite having increased purchasing power, (37%) of these groups of millennials are choosing drinking establishments with drink specials and affordable drink prices. Within this affordable drinks trend, (54%) of older millennials indicated that they prefer to visit a BYOB restaurant when dining out.On the other hand, more than 48% of millennials professionals are keeping up with trends by choosing drinking establishments based on knowledgeable bartenders/mixologists, drink presentations, and exclusive in-house cocktails.
Millennials have a wide range of alcoholic preferences, as a consequence, the alcoholic beverage market has seen several consumption changes within this generation. About (27%) of older millennials are choosing to drink beer when dining out, closely following (26%) drink wine and (24%) drink spirits. When visiting BYOB restaurants, (28%) of older millennial prefer to drink beer while the other millennial cohort (29%) prefer to drink wine. The consumption preferences of this generation can also be seen within their purchasing selections. When asked if they would consider purchasing a bottle of the drink of their choice at a drinking establishment, (97%) of older millennials responded yes. As this group of millennials is more established within their careers their consumption preferences are shifting between drinking beer and purchasing bottles. The strong economic power of older millennials is also presented in how much they are spending on purchasing a bottle when dining out. About (50%) responded that they spend between $40 – $59 on a bottle when dining out.
The alcoholic beverage industry is exponentially growing both in volume and value.As millennials come to age, with their value-conscious behavior, they are constantly challenging the way this industry markets towards their generation. By paying close attention to millennials drinking habits, especially older millennials, alcoholic beverages companies and drinking establishments have a profitable opportunity. Factors such as knowledgable bartenders, drink exclusives, and drink specials are pivotal for millennials when choosing a drinking establishment. Understanding the shifting drinking preferences of this generation and their constant need for social functions will provide a higher value towards a brand.
Ultimately, marketing tactics that are geared towards lifestyle choices and exclusive experiences will drive millennials’ interest. The ultimate goal for alcoholic beverage companies and drinking establishment is to understand the millennial mindset in order to succeed in sales with this generation.
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