We received more proof recently that marketing vodka requires a unique set of skills. The evidence came in an interview with David Kent, CEO of The Wine Group, a hugely successful and smart wine and spirits company. In the interview published in Shanken News Daily, a trade publication, Kent recounted the launch of a new line of vodkas:
“Once Cupcake vodka was on the shelf, we learned that we didn’t really understand how to communicate flavors to the consumer. People thought that Original, which was unflavored, should taste like cake batter or vanilla. And hardly anyone seemed to know what Chiffon was. Fortunately, the consumer response to the vodka’s quality and style was very positive, and several flavors such as Frosting and Devil’s Food have established strong positions in their segments.”
Oh yeah: “Cupcake” is also a wine brand. The Wine Company sells 2.4 million cases of it a year.