Is working from the pub the new working from home?
With pubs across the UK facing rising energy bills this winter, many have begun to seek out supplementary streams of income. The likes of Young’s, Fuller’s and Brewhouse & Kitchen have taken advantage of the working from home (WFH) boom brought about by the pandemic to offer consumers the chance to “work from a pub” (WFP) for £10-15 per day. The deals vary across establishments, but most include Wi-Fi, lunch, as well as unlimited tea and coffee, with printing and an after-work alcoholic drink offered by some.
According to PROOF Insight’s recent consumer poll, 19.4 million people work in jobs that would allow them to work from a pub, with 11 million of them having already done so or being open to try it. This includes 4.7 million people who are likely to work from a pub at least once a month, with 2.5 million of them likely to do so at least once a week. As people’s own domestic energy costs continue to rise, working in a local pub saves them from using their own electricity as well as providing small business owners with an alternative space.
The pandemic inspired pubs to get creative with their space to generate supplementary income, a tactic that many have continued. Many pubs offer more traditional events to get customers through the door, such as live music and stand-up comedy. Whereas others, such as Westow House in Crystal Palace, have attempted to fill their pub at traditionally quiet times of day with events such as a “Bring Your Baby Pub Quiz”. Outdoor space is a particularly useful asset for pubs, with some hosting markets in their gardens on weekend mornings. Of course, each pub is different and individual pub owners will need to consider how best to use their assets to generate extra income.
Sources: The Guardian, PROOF Insight research Oct 22
Opportunities for beer and cider over the next few months
The first restriction-free Christmas since 2019 is expected to be one filled with celebrations and reunions. 2022 saw Champagne triumph, a drinks trend expected to continue in to the winter months. Wine and spirits typically win over the festive period, each gaining a +0.7pp share of volume in the 4 week Christmas period vs the rest of the year (based on 2019 data). However, the FIFA World Cup is set to provide opportunities for beer and cider this winter.
With 68% of men drinking beer during the Euros 2020, the success beer and especially premium lager has experienced this year is expected to continue in to the winter months. In addition, stout sales reach a four-year peak (£98m) in the 4 weeks that include the Six Nations Rugby 2022 tournament which took place 5th February to 19th March this year. Could a winter fixture see stout win with football too?
In addition, cider is the most popular drink of women (followed by wine) during international football tournaments, with 1 in 3 planning to watch the World Cup. The opportunity for winter cider is compounded by the fact that cider sales has previously seen an uplift during the last four weeks of the year (pre-pandemic), demonstrating the opportunity for winter flavours such as spiced apple and winter berries as cider gets in on the festive football occasions this year.
To find out about the outlook of drinks over the next few months, contact PROOF.
Sources: PROOF POURtraits Panel Sept 22, PROOF Euro 2020 consumer survey, CGA data 52 weeks 2018-2019, CGA/MatchPint Value of Sport Report, Nielsen World Football Report
ESG initiatives still important to consumers despite the cost-of-living crisis
Faced with increased cost-of-living pressures, some consumers are having to re-evaluate what they find important when making their purchases. In an October survey, PROOF Insight found that more consumers consider price a determining factor when buying a drink – 92% vs. 87% back in November 2021. About the same percentage of consumers – 50% vs. 51% – find sustainably-produced drinks as important as they did in November 2021, although only 26% would be willing to pay more for a sustainably-made alcoholic drink, down from 39% back in November 2021.
Consumers still want to buy in an environmentally and socially conscious way, but they don’t expect to pay a premium for this. 3 in 4 drinks onsumers believe the responsibility lies with the manufacturers to ensure that the drinks they buy are made in an environmentally friendly way which suggests drinks consumers feel the cost should be absorbed by the producer. This month has seen a number of key players invest in ESG initiatives, such as Greene King adding ESG as one of its core strategy drivers and C&C Group entering a partnership with The Big Issue. While increasing costs may dampen some ESG initiatives, it should still be a consideration for brands and operators looking to influence consumers and get ahead of the competition.
Contact PROOF to find out more about what influences consumers when buying a drink.
Sources: PROOF Insight POURtraits, Propel
Investments, Mergers & Acquisitions
Sources: Langton Capital, Spirits Business, Propel
New Product Launches & Campaigns
Sources: Beverage Daily, The Spirits Business, The Drinks Business, Propel