Pernod Ricard UK is supporting the on-trade engage with consumers this Christmas through virtual masterclasses and in-bar solutions to encourage consumers through the door

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Article 21/08/2020

  • Pernod Ricard UK is hosting dual-branded customer masterclasses to reach 15,000 consumers over the Christmas period
  • 48,500 festive vessels are being supplied to provide easy serve solutions to customers and encourage consumers back into the On-Trade
  • The premium wine, spirits and champagne supplier will be supporting outlets with hygienic and digital solutions, and encouraging operators to get the basics right to give customers confidence to return

Pernod Ricard UK is urging the On-Trade to get the fundamentals right this Christmas in order to get consumers back through the door. Whilst the premium wine, spirits and champagne company was the only major supplier in growth during Christmas 2019[1], this festive season is set to be different as social distancing and health and safety restrictions look set to continue.

Despite an expected decline in footfall vs. last Christmas, there is still appetite for On-Trade activities. Pernod Ricard UK has a clear aim of supporting the resurgence of the On-Trade in the ‘new normal’ through engaging virtual experiences, simple serve solutions and digital opportunities to help operators adapt to an uncertain trading time.

To further propel consumers into venues this Christmas and drive awareness of its leading festive brands, Pernod Ricard UK is investing in above-the-line advertising spend, with campaigns going live from September for Powers Irish Whiskey The Glenlivet, and Absolut.

Supporting the On-Trade

Online masterclasses: Continuing the success of virtual experiences offered during lockdown, during which Pernod Ricard UK engaged with over 3,000 consumers through online masterclasses and partnered with The Wine & Spirits Education Trust to run 2,000 Level 1 Spirits training courses online for free for hospitality professionals, dual-branded customer masterclasses will be offered over the festive period. The masterclasses will be supported by Pernod Ricard UK’s Experiential and Consumer Activation team with the aim of engaging 15,000 consumers and inspiring them through serves to drive them into outlets. With 19-34-year-olds also being the most likely to engage in On-Trade led Christmas activities[2], the masterclasses will further help drive consumer loyalty.

At-home cocktail packages: As working from home looks set to continue and city centre footfall and corporate bookings are expected to fall, Pernod Ricard UK will be partnering with key managed customers on-at-home cocktail solutions. With 18% of 19-34-year-olds saying they would order cocktails to be delivered to their door[3], the partnerships will allow consumers to bring the pre-booked Christmas party package home and lock in sales for customers. Consumers can order either a cocktail package for four people, consisting of a bottle of Absolut, pre-batched Passion Star Martini and Espresso Martini cocktails and cocktail making equipment or a house party package for 10 people, consisting of a bottle of Absolut, Absolut Raspberri and mixers.

Easy serve solutions and menu visibility: Hygiene will be a factor in the preparation of drinks this year, with low touch cocktails offering minimal ingredients set to rise in popularity, and Pernod Ricard UK has a range of festive serves and vessels to achieve stand out. 48,500 enamel mugs and sustainable single-use Christmas-themed paper vessels, from brands including Absolut, Beefeater Blood Orange and The Glenlivet, are being supplied to the On-Trade to provide easy serve solutions in bar and for outdoor areas.

Consumers will still be looking for something special though, so it’s important for outlets to get their drinks menu right. 22% of usual household spending was prevented by lockdown and those consumers have emerged with more disposable income than before[4], meaning they are likely to accelerate their trading up behaviour. 1 in 5 consumers changed their drinking habits during lockdown, with those trading up more likely to continue these habits when in the On-Trade, making it important to ensure the right options are on menus to help create more value. Pernod Ricard UK is urging operators to offer festive twists to ensure stand out, such as the Espresso Martini, Jameson Old Fashioned and Amalfy Sunset Spritz (see recipes below).

Digital solutions: A number of trends are emerging post-lockdown that the On-Trade can capitalise on during the crucial festive sales period. With hygiene being of increasing influence, 30% of consumers prefer to order drinks through a mobile app, rising to 42% amongst 18-34 year olds[5], meaning a digital-first approach will be crucial to providing reassurance of a safe environment. Pernod Ricard UK is supporting independent free trade customers in enticing consumers to return through a range of engaging digital assets, including QR codes to allow consumers to view menus on their mobile phones and social media templates featuring festive designs and serve inspiration. Further social media tips are available via the ‘Back to work in the new normal’ guide published by Pernod Ricard UK’s Brand Engagement and Advocacy Team, intended to help the hospitality industry reopen.

James Bremner, On-Trade Channel Director for Pernod Ricard UK, comments: “There’s a strong possibility that Christmas will be the first big occasion where people can come together this year, and we’re committed to supporting our customers by helping them engage with consumers through virtual experiences, driving menu visibility and digital assets to give consumers confidence. 2020 has been a challenging year for the On-Trade, therefore outlets need to focus on getting the basics right to engage with consumers, whilst simultaneously encouraging trade up to limit value losses. That’s why we are investing significantly this year to ensure we are contributing towards the resurgence of the On-Trade.”


[1] CGA OPMS Data P13 2019

[2] PRUK Coronavirus Christmas Research, Toluna, 6th-8th June 2020

[3] PRUK Coronavirus Christmas Research, Toluna, 6th-8th June 2020

[4] Office for National Statistics

[5] CGA Brandtrack June 2020