Not satisfied with just men drinking its beer, Heineken is looking to attract more women to the brand with the launch of a new mid-strength, low-carb, low-calorie option, and has picked the Aussie market as the first in the world to taste it.
Heineken 3 is the first beer the company has introduced in Australia in over 20 years, and will be supported by an 18-month nationwide campaign that kicks off this afternoon in Sydney.
The launch event is aiming to create an iconic Australian summer experience in the last week of winter, mirroring the beer’s tagline ‘Have it All’. Social, digital, outdoor, retail and experiential activations will heavily feature throughout the campaign, with the primary target being inner-city consumers.
With only 86 calories and 3.3 per cent alcohol per bottle, Heineken 3 represents a big opportunity to capitalise on the growth potential of occasional beer drinkers across Australia, according to Alessandro Manuta, marketing manager at Heineken Lion Australia.
“This is a huge opportunity for us because we’ve identified that the daytime drinking occasion accounts for roughly 50 per cent of total beer volumes, and is dominated by the mid-strength segment,” he told B&T.
“I read some research recently which I think highlights the big opportunity really well. It was asking consumers what their plans were for the summer, and roughly 50 per cent said they were planning to do more exercise and live a healthier lifestyle, but the majority of these consumers – around 70 per cent – also said they were planning to go out more and drink more.
“This is because consumers these days want to have it all, and this is exactly our proposition. Consumers want a beer that is low in calories and carbs, but still tastes great, and that’s where we’re going with Heineken 3.”
Manuta said that while Dutch beer giant’s core target market remains men aged 18 to 34 years old, the new product is also a fantastic opportunity to recruit more female drinkers into the brand, “because they’re generally looking for an easy-drinking, low-calorie beer”.
“Our research testing [for Heineken 3] also showed that the results were positive for both males and females,” he added.
Furthermore, the beer was named the best lower-calorie lager at the World Beer Championships in 2013 and 2014 and won a gold medal at the 2015 European Beer Star Awards.
But with the likes of Hahn SuperDry and Pure Blonde already well-established in Australia’s low-carb beer market, how does Heineken plan to differentiate it’s new offering from the rest?
“The approach of Hahn SuperDry 3.5 or Pure Blonde is very much functional,” Manuta explained.
“The angle that we’re going to take is not functional – we’re not going to go out and compare the carbs and calories in our beer with those of our competitors. The approach that we’re taking is about the taste, because what we know from research is that calories and carbs are just a reassurance element – what consumers want is a product that delivers on taste.
“For example, when you buy a chocolate bar that is low in fat and sugar, you automatically doubt that it’s going to taste good, so that’s why we think that by going with the taste angle that this product is going to be really strong.”
As part of its commitment to meet more shopper needs, Heineken will also introduce a number of pack sizes in retail stores, including regular six and 24-packs along with a new 12-pack, to elevate purchase consideration amongst females and play a role in more occasions.