- (Non systematic) review of the literature on the impact and the strategies of online marketing for alcohol
- Monitoring of online alcohol marketing via selected websites and Facebook pages
- Overview of the legal regulation of online alcohol marketing in Switzerland and the self-regulation of the industry
- Online mystery-shopping
- The literature review highlights the use of internet as a new tool for alcohol marketing. Besides traditional websites, marketers rely on social media to reach a mainly young audience. Online marketing allows to interact with users who become ambassadors of the brands through liking, sharing and commenting posts from alcohol brands. One of the main issues is the user generated content, which is out of reach of any regulation or code. Research has shown that there is a correlation between the exposure to alcohol marketing and the onset of drinking and the amounts consumed. This correlation is even stronger when traditional marketing via newspapers, magazines etcetera is combined with online marketing.
- To generate an understanding of the marketing strategies for alcohol on the internet, monitoring of several brand websites and official Facebook pages over four months has been conducted. In general, the sites and pages respect the self-regulation codes, but the widespread use of lifestyle-advertisements suggests that these advertisements are also appealing to young people and even minors.
- There are several restrictions for alcohol marketing in Swiss law that also apply to online marketing, but the possibilities offered by the internet are difficult to regulate. The self-regulation codes only partially cover these gaps. One main point is the fact that user generated content is explicitly out of reach of these codes and the industry does not take responsibility for such content.
- A sample of online mystery shopping showed that it is very easy for minors to buy alcohol via the internet. In 11 of 12 cases minors could buy alcohol without having to prove their age. Therefore, Addiction Switzerland proposes to extend the "traditional" mystery shopping to online stores. Mystery shopping has proved to be an effective measure to sensitize outlets for respecting age limits.
Authors: Gallopel-Morvan,Spilka, Mutatayi, Rigaud, Lecas & Beck Title: France's Évin Law on the control of alcohol advertising: content, effectiveness and limitations Journal: Addiction, 2016, 10.1111/add.13431.
Abstract: Aims: To assess the effectiveness of the 2015 version of the French Évin Law that was implemented in 1991 with the objective of protecting young people from alcohol advertising.Design: Data were obtained from survey questions measuring exposure and receptivity to alcohol ads that were introduced for the first time in the 2015 European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs. Participants and settings: A representative sample of 6,642 tenth to twelfth grade students (mean age 17.3) were interviewed in 198 schools in France by a self-administered questionnaire. Measurements: Information was collected on alcohol advertising exposure in different media (outside billboards, Internet, etc.) and receptivity to recent ads (attractiveness, incentive to drink, etc.). Findings: The majority of students declared that they had been exposed at least once a month to alcohol ads in supermarkets (73.2%), in movies (66.1%), magazines and newspapers (59.1%), on billboards in streets (54.5%), and on the Internet (54.1%). Concerning the last recalled ads, 27.8% remembered the beverage type, 18.2% the brand, 13% felt like having a drink after having seen the ad and 19.6% found the ad attractive (boys ranked significantly higher than girls for all these indicators; p-value < 0.05). Conclusions: The 2015 version of the French Évin law does not appear effectively to protect young people from exposure to alcohol advertising in France. The full text article can be downloaded here.
Author: Michael Siegel, Renee M. Johnson, Keshav Tyagi, Kathryn Power, Mark C. Lohsen, Amanda J. Ayers and David H. Jernigan Title: Alcohol Brand References in U.S. Popular Music, 2009–2011 Journal: Substance Use & Misuse 2013 48:14, 1475-1484
Abstract This study aimed to assess the prevalence and context of alcohol brand references in popular music. Billboard Magazine year-end charts from 2009 to 2011 were used to identify the most popular songs in four genres: Urban, Pop, Country, and Rock. Of the 720 songs, 23% included an alcohol mention, and 6.4% included an alcohol brand mention. Songs classified as Urban had the highest percentage of alcohol mentions and alcohol brand mentions. The context associated with alcohol brand mentions was almost uniformly positive or neutral. Public health efforts may be necessary to reduce youth exposure to these positive messages about alcohol use.
Authors: Michael Siegel, William DeJong, Timothy S. Naimi, Erin K. Fortunato, Alison B. Albers, Timothy Heeren, David L. Rosenbloom, Craig Ross, Joshua Ostroff, Sergei Rodkin, Charles King, Dina L. G. Borzekowski, Rajiv N. Rimal, Alisa A. Padon, Raimee H. Eck and David H. Jernigan Title: Brand-Specific Consumption of Alcohol Among Underage Youth in the United States Journal: Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 37: 1195–1203. doi: 10.1111/acer.12084
Abstract Background: Little is known about brand-specific alcohol consumption among underage youth, as existing information is collected at the level of alcoholic beverage type. This study identifies the alcohol brands consumed by a nationally representative sample of underage youth in the United States. Methods: We obtained a national sample of 1,032 underage youth, aged 13 to 20, using a pre-recruited Internet panel maintained by Knowledge Networks. Youth aged 18 to 20 were recruited directly from the panel via email invitation. Teens aged 13 to 17 were identified by asking adult panelists to identify a member of their household. The survey assessed the past 30-day consumption of 898 brands of alcohol among 16 alcoholic beverage types, including the frequency and amount of each brand consumed in the past 30 days. Market share for a given brand was calculated by dividing the total number of drinks for that brand in the past 30 days across the entire sample by the total number of drinks for all identified brands. Results: The alcohol brands with highest prevalence of past 30-day consumption were Bud Light (27.9%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 23.3 to 32.4%), Smirnoff malt beverages (17.0%, 95% CI 12.9 to 21.1%), and Budweiser (14.6%, 95% CI 11.0 to 18.3%). Brand market share was concentrated in a relatively small number of brands, with the top 25 brands accounting for nearly half of all market shares. Conclusions: Underage youth alcohol consumption, although spread out over several alcoholic beverage types, is concentrated among a relatively small number of alcohol brands. This finding has important implications for alcohol research, practice, and policy.