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A Marketing Mix Heralding Equal Parts Quality and Affordability
By: Jeff Louis
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GotWodkahttp://spiritsreview.com/graphics/vodka-wodka-629.jpgIn 1997, billionaire Sidney Frank may have had the best branding idea ever. Frank’s idea was to create a premium vodka for the American market.

Based on the success of French wine throughout the world, Frank priced it above Belvedere, Absolut, Stoli, and other top-shelf competitors. Frank found initial success with Jägermeister, a drink he billed as the “best drink in the world.”   

Grey Goose became the “go-to” drink for vodka snobs, and his idea became known as the “Grey Goose Effect.”  

Is Grey Goose vodka better than any other brand?

In 2007, ABC News’ "20/20" decided to find out. Using five top-shelf brands (Ketel One, Belvedere, Hangar One, Stoli Elit, and Grey Goose) plus a retail brand (Smirnoff), "20/20" set up shop and began their field trials. Men and women between the ages of 21-40 tried the six brands.

Not only could the testers identify their favorite brand, they unanimously agreed vodka No. 1 was terrible. It was Grey Goose, the brand billed as "the world's best tasting vodka."

That's quite a feat for a tasteless, odorless, and colorless liquid.

In direct contrast, Wódka Vodka, a premium Polish rye liquor, decided to list their top-shelf brand at a reasonable price. A 1.75 liter bottle sells for a mere $15. Grey Goose, in comparison, costs $109.
According to SpiritsReview.com, Wódka Vodka ranks as the top-value vodka available. Its brand promise, not surprisingly, is “Hamptons Quality, Newark Pricing.”  

Wódka Vodka should make a killing in the U.S., as a recent drop occurred in liquor revenue while overall alcohol sales remained steady, a sure signal that vodka drinkers aren’t willing to spend as much for some quality brands.   


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About the Author

Jeff Louis: Media Planner, Brand Project Manager, blogger, and aspiring writer. Please leave a comment or get in touch with Jeff on Twitter. As always, thank you for reading!

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