Honey-Sweet Marketing Strategies Straight from Jack Daniels

jack daniels honeyAs the first alcoholic brand to purchase Twitter ads, Jack Daniels had to carefully craft a campaign around their audience while taking underage internet users into consideration. The mission was to build buzz around the premier of Tennessee Honey, the brand’s newest whisky product. Because Jack Daniel’s wanted to maintain its reputation as a “social brand,” encouraging conversation on Twitter was the natural avenue for the company to pursue.

Using the hashtag #JackDanielsHoney, Brown-Forman – which owns Jack Daniels – was able to promote the launch through Twitter account @JackDaniels. The campaign lasted 7 days and was able to spark considerable conversation from users that enthusiastically tweeted about it.

Our Talk with Brown-Forman

By raising awareness about #JackDanielsHoney, Brown-Forman was able to ensure a successful product launch. Our interview with the marketing team at Brown-Forman reveals the strategies they employed to create buzz and successfully pull-off the historic Twitter campaign. When Brown-Forman first launched their #JackDanielsHoney campaign, Twitter reported “significantly higher than average” engagement rates. 

Since Twitter doesn’t have any built in analytics pages similar to Facebook, what do you use as a barometer to measure Twitter success?

There was a considerable amount of “buzz” surrounding the launch of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey from both industry trade and consumers alike.  It’s not every day that Jack introduces a new product, so when Jack Honey was launched, people were talking about it.  Twitter was used to amplify that message, introduce consumers to the new product and encourage people to give it a try.  Since Jack Honey was the first spirits advertiser within the Twitter space, it was really a test to see what type of response the brand would receive.

A recent report showed that Jack Daniel’s spent almost as much on its digital marketing (Twitter included) around the launch of Jack Daniel’s Honey as it does on television. Are you shifting marketing gears? Or have television and digital marketing reached equilibrium? Or do you foresee digital overtaking “traditional” marketing?

 While we do not disclose our exact marketing mix, we have invested heavily in the digital and social space both during launch phase and in the two years since.  Digital media investment is an effective way to reach our target consumers and allows us to geo-target specific messages to specific consumer groups.  That being said, TV advertising has also performed very well for Jack Honey and will continue to play a heavy role in the marketing mix going forward.

Let’s say Jack Daniel’s has another product launching in 6 months. What do we do now to prepare for the online marketing campaign?

We cannot speculate on the future, only comment on what was learned from a launch that has already taken place. 

Twitter’s Vine has been gaining popularity recently. Do you intend to market through that platform?

While we cannot comment on one specific partner, we are continuously looking at the latest technology trends from our digital partners and like to stay at the forefront assuming the fit is right for our brand(s) strategies and our responsibility practices.

We’ve noticed your Facebook page is updated less frequently that your Twitter page. Why is that?

Given the legal/regulatory environment that spirits brands must comply with, it is more difficult to build Twitter followers than it is Facebook friends.  We have posting strategies against both communities accordingly.

Thanks to Brown-Forman for speaking with us and sharing their marketing insight!

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Daniel

Daniel Chioco is a writer living in Nashville, TN. He earned his Commercial Music degree at Belmont University, where he also studied creative writing and wrote for the student newspaper. When he isn't creating content, Daniel works as an actor and films YouTube videos. He is also a freelance musician and is authoring his first fantasy novel.

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