This could be a difficult one to swallow, even considered unAustralian (thank the 2023 lamb ad for this reference), but the market says otherwise … Enter the ‘sober curious’ movement, where one in four consumers are moderating their alcohol consumption. A trend that is expected to continue.
One of our ‘one to watch’ Aussie brands is Naked Life. A nonalcoholic alternative that matches an alcohol drinking experience.
The numbers don’t lie. Naked Life grew 331% in the last three financial years. Their $357,694 turnover in 2019-’20 grew to $6,655,929 in 2021- ’22. This is expected to double in the next financial year. Strong grounds for topping AFR Fast 100 in 2022 and for taking out the number one brand for non-alcohol in grocery, outselling many well-established major brands.
The alcohol-free market in Australia is worth $152 million annually and is forecast to increase by 31% each year until 2024. The US non-alcoholic market is worth $10 billion per year and is expected to grow by 8% each year through to 2025, compared with 0.7% for alcohol beverages (source, IWSR Analysis).
Naked Life’s success stems from the following initiatives since launching the brand in 2016:
• Naked Life saw the growth of non-alcoholic drinks. Though initially take up in Australia was slow, the trend was on their side.
• Capitalised on a gap in the category, creating healthy (100% sugar-free RTDs) and distilled products in the non-alcoholic category.
• Dedication to innovation and quality ingredients, recipes and production techniques.
• After establishing awareness and trust with their RTD cans they then launched their spirits range.
• Developed familiarity in their offering (by researching top voted drinks) which include margaritas, negronis and espresso martinis.
• Taking a ‘partnership and benefit model’ approach (with partners, investors and supply chain) to grow the Naked Life brand.
• Securing key distribution partners, e.g. Woolworths, Coles and on- and off-premises.
One Naked Life marketing campaigns was run off the back of a study run by Dr Michael Livingston (La Trobe Centre for Alcohol Policy Research) that found “35% of managers drink a few times a week, while only 14% of 18 to 25-year-olds do the same”. This led to the insight that there is a disconnection in Australia between generations in management (those that are setting the culture) and emerging young employees. So, what does Naked Life do? It gives away 12,000 cans to Australian offices during the Christmas period: a very smart sampling campaign.
Naked Life marketing targets locations where people are typically drinking alcohol. So, expect to see Naked Life at festivals, outdoor cinemas and hotels, selling the concept of non-alcoholic options as a means of enhancing social experiences. With ‘redefining moments’ as its brand theme, Naked Life focuses on providing other ways of sharing moments, not necessarily advocating giving up alcohol.
Naked Life strategically is not aiming or claiming that alcohol is not good and it should be removed, but to encourage trial and switching from just one alcoholic drink. Given that the alcohol market in Australia is valued at $37 billion, small shifts in consumer behaviour are massive for all players.
Let’s raise a toast to a very successful Australian brand. Keep them coming!