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June 21, 2024

Paid Social Ads Playbook for Liquor Brands Pt. 1

Why is investing in paid advertising crucial for brands? Primarily, it stands as the leading method for businesses to foster growth and generate revenue. Conversely, improper execution can also lead to significant financial losses.

Paid Social Ads Playbook for Liquor Brands Pt. 1
Paid Social Ads Playbook for Liquor Brands Pt. 1

As the holidays approach, expect an influx of gift purchases across the next few months — an annual event that’ll only be heightened by the post-COVID e-commerce shopping boom.

Even more so, broader delays in global supply chains are trickling down to affect availability and shipping for e-commerce brands across all segments. Our recommendation? Beat this year’s slowdown by getting a head start on your seasonal campaigns, promotions, and more. 

We’ve laid out four steps below that every alcohol brand should take to beat the annual gift rush, while also maximizing the profitability and potential of this concentrated shopping period. 

Step One: Time Blocking

First, you can start building out a major messaging campaign by looking ahead on your calendar and selecting key dates to lay out a time frame from early November up until Christmas.

Specifically, we recommend blocking out three primary phases for your campaign delivery.

Pre-Black Friday

By pushing messaging campaigns out as early as mid-November, you’re gearing folks up for the holiday season around the corner, as well as letting potential buyers know to keep an eye out for a promotion in the works. 

More importantly, you’re setting your brand up to start the season on a strong note — and to not get caught unprepared by the sudden arrival of Thanksgiving crunchtime. 

Thanksgiving & Late November

From Thanksgiving onward, particularly that first weekend including Black Friday, you’ll want to host and advertise some kind of actionable event, i.e. a special release or promotional discount, to jumpstart customers into their seasonal shopping cycles. 

Cutoffs for Christmas

Finally, you’ll want to round out the season by selecting a cutoff date for placing new orders. 

Seven to 10 days before December 25th is a safe bet for buyers to receive a bottle at their door by Christmas Day, and reminders should be sent out in the days leading up to this cutoff. 

In terms of the broader time crunch that’s anticipated due to global supply chain slowdowns, you should emphasize the convenience of purchasing from a domestic brand paired with the reliability that you offer for a timely, safe delivery of your product.

Step Two: Spice Up Your Specials

Once you’ve laid the initial groundwork, it’s time to elevate your campaign by crafting it into something creative and exciting for the spirit of the season. 

In other words, your buyer’s inbox may be flooded by holiday deals, but you can capture their attention and help them recognize the thoughtfulness through your core brand messaging.

For instance, Far North Spirits is offering a holiday two-pack for drinks that’ll warm you up in the colder months. Imagine a whiskey, rye, or bourbon for your spicy cocktail or mulled wine. 

Ultimately, you’re working with the inventory you have and considering which themed products can play into people’s holiday spirit — even better if it’s in a bundle to boost your AOV. 

On the other hand, this period offers a practical opportunity to look back at the year’s releases and offload any remaining inventory through a unique discount or exclusive holiday promo. 

Step Three: Ramp Up Your Promotion Game

Next, consider the tactical logistics of your promotions. After all, it can be tricky to time promo launches, depending on whether your customer pool skews toward early or late gift grabbers. 

There are two general approaches you can take: 1) offering enticing deals early on to preempt other sales or 2) holding off until late in the buyer’s window to pull the trigger on your promo. 

The former can snag early shoppers, or at least convince late shoppers to try an early purchase, but could also lose its appeal by mid-December when fresher deals are dropping every day. 

The latter can appeal to buyers who play the long game and wait it out for the most optimal deal, but can still ultimately result in you losing out on early or average shoppers. 

Ultimately, there’s no gold-standard method and you’ll need to use your judgement depending on what aligns with your brand’s target demographic, metric goalposts, and even inventory

For instance, returning to your campaign calendar, you can skew discounts away from marking down products and toward offering cheaper, faster shipping as Christmas creeps closer. 

Step Four: Email Marketing On Deck

As we pointed out in our advice for email marketing, setting up your email flow so your comms can run seamlessly is a simple yet essential step of the process that’s easily overlooked. 

We recommend starting with a quick info sweep: pull last year’s seasonal purchase data and make sure that customer cohort is consistently re-engaged early on. 

In turn, your team won’t be stressed out and frantically attempt to piece together the perfect layout in MailChimp just a few days before Thanksgiving — which circles back to our larger point: the holidays are a time of year with promise of high ROI for your alcohol brand. 

You can utilize this opportunity to the max by planning thoroughly and creatively, not stressfully executing a last minute, makeshift campaign. 

If your brand has these moving parts staged within the first weeks of November, you should be ready to hook the earliest seasonal shoppers and take full advantage of the holiday rush.

Sit Back and Enjoy the Holidays! 

Once you’ve got these steps locked in — a killer campaign calendar, creative promos, and ready-to-launch email marketing — you’ll be the one leading the holiday rush, not falling behind. 

Whether your user base is composed of individuals shopping for friends and family or corporate customers with high-volume needs, Accelpay is the platform of choice for your alcohol brand. 

To get access to our instant storefront setup and stress-free bulk ordering, get started here.

Why is investing in paid advertising crucial for brands? Primarily, it stands as the leading method for businesses to foster growth and generate revenue. Conversely, improper execution can also lead to significant financial losses.

It's essential to recognize that paid advertising isn't the sole avenue for business expansion. Before diving into paid campaigns, brands should engage their initial customer base through organic methods such as word-of-mouth, earned media, and direct engagement. This approach allows businesses to grasp their audience's motivations and preferences, laying a solid foundation for successful paid advertising strategies. From there, it’s much easier to make ad creative that you know will resonate with your audience. It’s easier to make visuals and messaging much more clear in a static ad or in a video script.

Key Metrics to Monitor

In managing advertising efforts, especially within Facebook's Business Manager, the following metrics are paramount:

  • Cost per Mille (CPM) or the expense incurred per thousand impressions
  • Click-Through Rate (CTR)
  • Cost Per Click (CPC)
  • Cost Per View (CPV)
  • Cost Per Add to Cart (CPATC)
  • Cost per Acquisition or Lead (CPA/CPL)
  • Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
  • Return on Ad Spend (ROAS)
  • Profitable Return on Ad Spend (PRoAS)
  • Media Efficiency Ratio (MER)

While other indicators might also be relevant, focusing on these metrics provides insights into potential funnel bottlenecks.

For example, a low CTR suggests issues with ad messaging or creativity. A bottleneck at the Add to Cart (ATC) stage indicates a less compelling offer. If customers hesitate at the Checkout phase, the benefits of the product may not be communicated effectively.

Essential Elements of Paid Media Success

Dispelling the myth that numerous software tools and complex strategies are necessary, effective paid media hinges on.

The Hook

Capturing interest through compelling angles.

Your Hook acts as the magnet to spark interest.

For a liquor brand introducing a new color-changing vodka that transforms with temperature, simply highlighting its unique feature may not fully capture the imagination.

However, marketing it as “Unveil the spectacle in every pour — the vodka that dances with temperature” could spark intrigue and draw enthusiasts eager to experience innovation in their glass.

The approach is often the overlooked secret sauce in ads. Established brands might skip this due to their existing market presence, but for newcomers, a unique approach is vital for capturing attention and carving out market space.

Target Audience

Precise targeting based on channel, interests, and the specific problems the product addresses.

This term refers to the specific group you aim to reach, including the platforms they frequent and their unique interests or behaviors. It's all about pinpointing and addressing a unique need they have, in line with your approach.

Creative Execution

The artistry of ad copy, design succinctness, and engaging content.

This element is the art of crafting your ad’s message, the succinctness of its design, and the skill of delivering the punchline in an engaging manner. The essentials of a compelling hook, addressing the problem promptly, showcasing the product soon after, followed by a call-to-action, are crucial. Yet, the ultimate test is whether your content stands out even without the ad spend. Failing this means starting at a disadvantage.

At this juncture, your goal is to build trust enough to earn a click. Remember, people turn to social media and television for entertainment, not ads.

User Experience

Optimizing the post-click experience through targeted landing pages rather than generic home or product pages.

This refers to what happens post-click. Typically, users might land on a homepage or product page, which are not always the best for converting traffic. Utilizing an approach that hooks and earns the click should lead them to a landing page that continues the narrative. For instance, a click on the sea moss cream ad should lead to a page that keeps discussing the benefits of itch-free skin.

A Product Detail Page (PDP) generally begins with selling the product, possibly offering more in-depth information. However, a challenge with PDPs is the lack of flexibility to tailor the product presentation to different visitor segments.

On a landing page, even a simple design focused on a hero product gives you the flexibility to adjust the narrative and visuals to meet the expectations and needs of incoming traffic.

The landing page should clarify:

  • The product’s nature
  • Its purpose
  • The benefits to the consumer
  • Comparison with alternatives
  • Delivery timelines if ordered immediately

The Proposition

Tailoring offers and merchandising to entice new customers effectively.

Generally, this is a promotional offer that you’re presenting to entice new customers. While some brands may not need to offer discounts due to subscription incentives, others, especially in consumable sectors, might introduce trials. For instance, offering samples of snacks, beverages, or fragrances can help consumers decide their favorite, encouraging repeat purchases.

Practical Tips

If your click-through rate falls below 2%, it's a clear indicator that your ad creative needs improvement.

A Cost per 1000 Impressions (CPM) exceeding $20 indicates a deficiency in creative appeal. While higher-value products may justify elevated CPMs, compelling creative work often leads to lower advertising costs.

To avoid oversaturating your market, a daily advertising spend of up to $1,000 for every million individuals in your target audience is recommended. Thus, for an audience of 20 million, allocating $20,000 daily is appropriate.

If your advertising budget is under $100,000 per month, focus your initial efforts on Meta platforms, then consider expanding to other platforms.

With advertising expenditures of $500,000 a month, it's advisable to explore television advertising to enhance the effectiveness of your lower-funnel marketing strategies.

Adding branded search campaigns as an additional marketing channel is crucial, especially when extensive reach on Meta prompts consumers to look up your product on Google. This necessitates bidding on your brand and product names.

Manage comments diligently for ad spends between $1,000 to $20,000 daily. Tackle negative feedback in a structured manner by first hiding, then blocking, and if necessary, deleting such comments.

Actively engage with all comments on your ads. This practice not only builds a sense of community but also improves the efficiency and longevity of your advertising efforts by fostering positive interactions.

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Braxton Freeman






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