Trade acts to deter bingeing

One of the key initiatives of the trade’s push for sensible alcohol consumption is Why Let Good Times Go Bad? which has united producers as well as retailers.

Previously known as the Campaign for Smarter Drinking, this five-year, £100 million campaign challenges the social acceptability of drunkenness among young adults. It is run by alcohol awareness charity Drinkaware in partnership with the drinks industry and the government.

Targeted at 18-24 year olds, Why Let Good Times Go Bad? encourages drinkers to adopt smarter drinking practices such as eating prior to drinking, pacing alcoholic drinks with water or soft drinks, and looking after mates, to help avoid a night out taking a turn for the worse.

This nationwide campaign, funded by voluntary contributions from across the industry, is delivered through advertising, media, social networking, packaging and crucially, at point-of-sale areas in stores, pubs, clubs and bars.

Now in its second year, this partnership between alcohol producers and on and off-trade retailers has already delivered media value of over £23 million.

Some 70% of young adults have engaged with the campaign and adopted some of the recommendations.

The 2010 campaign launch and year-long engagement with the target audience, including a partnership with the National Union of Students, aims to build on this success, reducing the impact of harmful drinking and challenging the acceptability of drunkenness.

Off-trade backs campaign?In 2009 the Co-op displayed campaign artwork throughout its 2,200 national stores on posters and via till screen ads. Additionally, the chain produced and ran in-store radio ads, bringing the campaign to life and reaching an estimated 14 million shoppers per week.

In 2009, in support of Why Let Good Times Go Bad? Spar achieved 92% compliance across 2,000 stores against its campaign commitment, based on an independent audit. The group was the best example of off-trade compliance, by far, with the next best scoring 75% compliance against commitment. Spar displayed more than 10 pieces of POS per store and ran radio advertising throughout the campaign.

Morrisons contributed to the 2009 campaign by featuring customised posters in-store and displaying shelf barkers with campaign messaging.

Beverage Brands led the field in 2009 with its co-ordinated production of almost 700,000 bottle neck collars. In conjunction with Diageo, which supplied neck collar artwork, Beverage Brands volunteered to manage the lifecycle of the collar production and subsequently distributed collars tailored to seven brands – spanning spirits, wines and RTDs.

Chief executive of Drinkaware Chris Sorek says: “With a long-term campaign like Why Let Good Times Go Bad? it is essential to learn from the success and challenges of previous years. The 2009 campaign laid a strong foundation and as these case studies show, initiative and ingenuity brought the campaign to life.

“We hope last year’s campaign champions in both the off and on-trade will inspire companies taking part in 2010 and encourage others who are yet to confirm their plans.

“There is no doubt that tackling binge-drinking among 18-24 year olds is an issue which requires a fundamental culture change. Why Let Good Times Go Bad? show a unified approach to tackling the issue head on by giving young people realistic, smarter drinking tips to minimise alcohol-related harm.

“Encouragingly, significant numbers of Drinkaware’s funding companies have already committed to in-kind support at levels which exceed the 2009 campaign, but it’s not too late to get involved. No matter what level of commitment, the key to spreading smarter drinking tips to as many 18 to 24 year olds as possible is for all stakeholders to work together.

“An added incentive for stakeholder companies to participate in this year’s campaign is the chance to enter two bespoke Drinkaware awards at the Responsible Drinks Retailing Awards 2010, entries for which will open soon.

“One will award the company which demonstrates the best implementation of the campaign, the other will recognise the individual or team with the most innovative idea for extending the reach of Why Let Good Times Go Bad? 2010.”