Heineken banks on tournament drive

Heineken banks on tournament drive

Mr Teerapat says Heineken adapted strategies to meet the Covid-19 situation.
Mr Teerapat says Heineken adapted strategies to meet the Covid-19 situation.

Heineken, the Dutch beer brand, remains committed to keeping its brand alive although the demand of the overall beer market is expected to decrease at a double-digit rate for the second consecutive year.

Thailand's beer market is worth an estimated 180 billion baht a year, with Boon Rawd Brewery Co controlling 60% followed by Thai Beverage at 40%.

Teerapat Pongmaytee, marketing manager of Thai Asia Pacific Brewery Co, the marketer of Heineken beer, said overall beer consumption has become tepid since the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020 when the market fell by a double-digit rate.

In its best bid to reach its drinkers when on-ground activities are prohibited and sales from on-premise channels have had to temporarily stop to stem the contagion, Heineken has still kept trying new marketing strategies.

"We've learned from the fast-moving consumer goods market that during the crisis, we still have to continue building brand awareness among our customers who are believed to get ready to drink again after the Covid-19 crisis," he said. "If we don't do that, we may have to invest heavier to draw them back once the virus situation improves.''

In 2021, Heineken plans to apply three strategies comprising building brand awareness, staying relevant to consumers and impactful communication to keep the brand in consumers' mind.

In the latest development, Heineken has kicked off the "Enjoy the Rivalry" global campaign for the UEFA EURO 2020™ under the concept of "There's Fun in the Rivalry'' running from June 11 to July 11.

The kick-off will see the launch of brand new, limited-edition bottles and cans for EURO 2020 fans.

The iconic Heineken red star will be transformed into the national flags of the 24 participating countries, showing the name of the country and the EURO 2020 symbol allowing fans to choose whether to get the entire collection or just the bottle of their favourite teams.

According to Mr Teerapat, the Enjoy the Rivalry campaign organised by Heineken for EURO 2020 fans in Thailand was created based on consumer insights which revealed that the fun doesn't just come from cheering on one's own team, but in being with friends who are fans of other teams.

"We developed strategies to fit with the Covid-19 situation and to build Heineken awareness," he said.

"Even without live broadcasts, it doesn't impact our drinkers. Due to the work-from-home policy, we believe it will be an opportunity for more people to watch the EURO 2020 matches,'' he said, adding that with all of these activities, the company is confident of reaching 16 million fans during the month of EURO 2020.

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