The drinks brands with the biggest ad spend in 2022

New data from marketing intelligence platform Pathmatics has revealed the top 10 drinks brands in Australia when it comes to digital ad spend in the first half of 2022. 

Unsurprisingly, brands in the alcoholic beverage category spent big during the summer months, with Aussies taking advantage of Christmas holidays during this period as well as attending events such as music festivals and BBQ’s.

Diageo’s Bundaberg Rum was No.1 with an estimated spend of $1,212,000, almost double Pure Blonde Cider in No.2 position with an estimated spend of $694,000.

Diageo had three brands in the top 10 – Bundaberg Rum, Gordon’s Gin and Tanqueray. CUB was also active, with Pure Blonde Cider, Carlton Dry and Great Northern in the top 10.

Bundaberg Rum’s initiatives this year have included a collaboration with Uber Eats to turns the product’s fabled nickname – ‘sugarcane champers’ into reality. The result was a special bottling called Maison de Bundy’s Blanc de Cane made with white Queensland cane spirit and Bundaberg Ginger Beer.

It also launched its first ever limited-edition Winter Series: Campfire Rum. The highly anticipated release attracted almost 20,000 comments on Facebook in the lead-up to its release alone. The dark Bundaberg Rum carried burnt caramel and butterscotch flavours, balanced by a nutty smoothness from fire-toasted Australian macadamias.

Bundy also announced in March that it was on a mission to raise $200,000 in flood relief to help communities across Queensland and NSW recover and rebuild.

In late 2021, Bundaberg Rum’s Raising the Bar initiative launched a national advertising campaign, Don’t forget your local starring comedian Becky Lucs, to revive great pub rituals and encourage Australians to support their local pub, club, or bar.

Diageo marketing manager Jodi McLeod said the campaign was designed to remind people of what makes their locals special.

“COVID-19 has had a profound impact on the hospitality industry across Australia with pubs, clubs and bars of all sizes experiencing a massive impact to their businesses. The pandemic has changed the way we ‘local’ as safety regulations have made going to your local more structured and less spontaneous,” said McLeod.

“Our challenge is to shift people out of their homes by reminding them about what makes our locals so special and focusing on the socialisation and community benefits of getting back together.”

The drinks top 10

  1. Bundaberg Rum (Diageo)
  2. Pure Blonde Cider (Carlton & United Breweries)
  3. Gordon’s Gin (Diageo)
  4. Bombay Sapphire (Bacardi)
  5. Aperol (Campari Group)
  6. Carlton Dry (Carlton & United Breweries)
  7. Tanqueray (Diageo)
  8. Patron Tequila (Bacardi)
  9. XXXX Gold (Lion Pty Ltd)
  10. Great Northern Brewing Co. (Carlton & United Brew)

Regional Director ANZ at Pathmatics & Sensor Tower Eugene Du Plessis said: “The first half of 2022 has flown by, bringing with it a flurry of cultural and economic changes. This has correlated in key peaks and troughs in digital ad spend as brands had to adapt to the ongoing changes in consumer behaviour relating to these societal events.”

The top 10 Aussie brands

The Bundy outlay was dwarfed when it came to overall brand spend by Menulog, which took the top spot with an estimated $23,065,000 cash splash. The majority of spend within the first few months of the year as fear of the new Omicron COVID-19 variant was high and consumers flocked to online food orders. 

Streaming platforms Binge and Kayo took home the second spot, seeing the highest investment in digital advertising in May following the news that Netflix was losing high volumes of long-term subscribers.

Shopify was the third highest spender throughout the period at a time when ‘the great resignation’ sentiment was high, with many Aussies looking to leave their jobs and pursue a side hustle or start their own business. 

Financial services was the top category, spending an estimated total of $137million. Spend was at its peak in May and June when the RBA interest rates rose.  

The Victorian government also saw considerable digital ad spend at the start of the year with just under $4million spent in January. This was predominantly focused on COVID-19 messaging. As COVID-19 messaging became less of a priority throughout the year, spend progressively dropped, with its lowest point in June. 

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