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Grey Goose vodka to get ‘brand reset’

Bacardi is planning a “brand reset” for Grey Goose vodka this year to “reconnect” with consumers, according to the brand’s chief marketing officer.

Lee Applbaum, Patrón and Grey Goose chief marketing officer

Speaking to The Spirits Business last month, Patrón and Grey Goose chief marketing officer Lee Applbaum said that he plans to launch a “new brand creative platform” for the vodka in April.

“It’s more important than ever that brands are transparent and have integrity,” said Applbaum.

“The beauty of Grey Goose, much like Patrón, is that we have that. The challenge is around emotional connectivity, so this year we will have a ‘brand reset’ rather than a brand relaunch. It’s resetting the brand and creating that emotional connectivity.”

While details of the ‘brand reset’ are being kept under wraps, Applbaum said he has “no desire to throw out what continues to work for the brand”.

“We have a very iconic package, a very iconic logo, there’s so many things about the brand that are working incredibly well. It’s going to be more about the tone and the softer side of the emotional connectivity of the brand. Authenticity is critically important, whether that’s expressed in terms of transparency or integrity.”

Grey Goose experienced a double-digit decline of 13.3% to 3.5 million nine-litre cases in 2017 – the brand’s biggest decline in five years – according to Brand Champions data.

Applbaum, who took on the additional position of chief marketing officer for Grey Goose last year, notes that the super-premium vodka category “is incredibly competitive and has been declining on the whole”.

He said: “The growth in vodka has not been coming from the premium space and so our challenge with Grey Goose is not only about the brand but about reenergising and reigniting consumer and trade interest in super-premium vodka. It’s as much a category challenge as it is a brand challenge.”

He added that the challenge for Grey Goose is “relatability”, which will be addressed in the new push.

“Consumers are having a hard time connecting emotionally with Grey Goose. Consumers understand that it’s a luxury brand and is something that is meant for celebrations. What we’ve lost is that realisation that every moment has the potential to be a celebration. So our energy with the brand is focussed on reconnecting with the consumers.”

On managing both Patrón Tequila and Grey Goose, Applbaum added that “the hope is to continue to exploit synergies between the two brands” overtime.

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