Case Study: Marston's

Understanding the beer drinker

How we help Marston’s

Every year Marston’s commission Eureka! to interview drinkers from across Great Britain to ensure they are adequately understanding the drinker and keeping an eye on emerging market trends.

How we help Marston’s

Every year Marston’s commission Eureka! to interview drinkers from across Great Britain to ensure they are adequately understanding the drinker and keeping an eye on emerging market trends.

The challenge

As the UK’s largest Ale brewer and licensed distributor of highly recognised World lagers and Craft Beers, Marston’s have a wide portfolio of stakeholders to satisfy in terms of innovation, growth and category management. Even before the COVID pandemic, the business was adapting to a long term change in drinking habits with consumers increasingly favouring drinking at home rather than in the pub.

In addition, Marston’s need to keep up with rapidly changing drinking styles, flavours and trends. Ales are being influenced by craft styles with more hoppy flavours, and Lager is seeing a shift towards more premium level brands. The confirmation of the merger with Carlsberg UK is likely to mean an even greater focus on brand, ranging and delivering the right consumer experience within each category.

The solution

Every year Marston’s commission Eureka! to interview drinkers from across Great Britain to ensure they are adequately understanding the drinker and keeping an eye on emerging market trends. We collect insight from 2,000 Ale drinkers and 2,000 Lager drinkers across both the on-trade and off-trade (in home) markets. That’s a whopping 4,000 annual interviews with drinkers each with their own story to tell in terms of the consumption behaviour, drinking occasions and future needs.

Our findings are then uniquely fused with CGA sales data, Kantar Worldpanel and Alcovision data to create a holistic, up-to-date picture that feeds into two annual reports. These ‘state of the nation’ reports are always keenly anticipated by stakeholders across the alcohol trade. Key data is also shared with individual brand teams across the business who, in turn, might also commission their own bespoke research with us – for instance, a deeper dive into the German Lager Category.

Tools

Focus groups

Customer segmentation

Online surveys

Services

Competitor analysis

Brand research

Customer satisfaction

Customer journey

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The work provided by Eureka! has been instrumental in furthering the understanding of our consumer. It laid the foundations for our annual category reports and has given us the insight to support several of our decisions over the past 12 months. The results and methodology behind them have also been well received by customers in all channels. Rich and Dave were a pleasure to work with and managed the project effectively for us throughout. We will definitely continue to work with Eureka!

Tom Lenihan

The work provided by Eureka! has been instrumental in furthering the understanding of our consumer. It laid the foundations for our annual category reports and has given us the insight to support several of our decisions over the past 12 months. The results and methodology behind them have also been well received by customers in all channels. Rich and Dave were a pleasure to work with and managed the project effectively for us throughout. We will definitely continue to work with Eureka!

Tom Lenihan

The Eureka! moment

Having run these studies since our inception we have built up a formidable amount of knowledge about the drinker, their shopping habits and brand preferences. In the past year we have taken this knowledge up to the ‘next level’ by developing a bespoke Drinker Segmentation for the Marketing Team at Marston’s. Other notable trends and insights include:

Trends

Understanding both the Lager and Ale drinker generally was a key theme running throughout our research for Marston’s. Our most recent data show that Ale drinkers are more likely to seek out new drinks (57% are experimental) in contrast to Lager drinkers who are traditionally more conservative (41% stick to their favourites).

Experimentation

We know from other research that drink experimentation and consumer movement towards Craft ale or Craft lager are closely linked. It’s therefore not a huge leap to predict that we will see an increased clamour for new glass shapes in the ‘trendy’ craft category.

Importance

In the on-trade setting, glassware is extremely important to the perfect serve, with 7 in 10 consumers confirming that is of real importance. It is particularly important for those on higher incomes, those visiting certain venues and younger drinkers. Will this trend also be seen in the off-trade setting, with consumers looking to replicate more of a meaningful drink experience in the home?

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Ale drinkers who seek out new drinks

%

Lager drinkers who stick to what they like

Resources

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Report

Off-Trade Beer Report 2019/2020

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Report

On-Trade Beer Report 2019/2020

Video

Quality Experience Video

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We’d love to bounce some ideas around with you

Either get in touch with us below or have a further browse of our website to discover how we can solve your business conundrums.

We’d love to bounce some ideas around with you

Either get in touch with us below or have a further browse or have a further browse of our website to discover how we can solve your business conundrums.

Eureka! Research

The Mill | Radford Road | Alvechurch | Worcestershire | B48 7LD

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