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Customer Advocacy in Non-alcoholic drinks brands

Non-Alcoholic Drinks Brands: Cheers to Customer Advocacy!

Rosie Brown
By Rosie Brown — April 10, 2024 -

Read time: 5 minutes

The shift towards mindfully cutting back on alcohol is shaking things up like never before. Gone are the days when not having an alcoholic beverage in your hand required an awkward excuse. Whether it's wellness, personal matters, or just the thrill of trying something new, an increasing number of people are opting for no- and low-alcohol drinks. This move isn't just a 'Dry January' fad but is becoming a staple preference throughout the year. 

Driven by Gen Z, the 'sober curious' demographic, the global non-alcoholic drinks eCommerce market is surging, expected to exceed US$176bn this year with a 24.62% annual growth rate.

Our data from working with leading 'non-alcoholic drinks' brands reveals an average 9.81% share rate – the highest in the food and drink category – and an average 11.07% referral conversion rate, crafting a dynamic mix for customer advocacy.

The growing customer base and elevated referral rates present more than just market opportunities – they offer a chance to connect with enthusiastic customer advocates ready to elevate your brand.

For businesses, the expansion of the non-alcohol drinking crowd and their demand for premium choices signifies an opportunity to weave these advocates into your brand's narrative. This creates strong engagement networks, accelerates growth, and strengthens brand authenticity. Measuring these actions is key for better service, longer retention, and enhanced advocacy.

Let's discover how leading brands are turning this growing trend into a wave of advocacy.


Lifestyle and Health Trends: A Liquid Asset in Advocacy

In today's wellness-focused landscape, CBD drinks, flavoured water, seltzers, and functional beverages are more than just refreshments—they're lifestyle choices that echo broader health trends. And as these beverages cater to specific health interests and preferences, they naturally foster a sense of community and advocacy among users. 

Enthusiasts are not only drawn to their health advantages but also the values they represent, leading to stronger brand advocacy as consumers share their positive experiences. These shared experiences often translate into significant social media traction, further amplifying the brand's reach. This dynamic illustrates how innovative, health-oriented products can serve as powerful tools for customer engagement and advocacy–as we've seen in the supplements industry.

air up, recognising the importance of health, as well as sustainability, in modern purchasing decisions has positioned itself to directly address these consumer priorities.‍


Community and Social Engagement: A Pour of Support

We've seen remarkable advocacy success in the non-alcoholic drinks sector, including a brand witnessing a 194% YOY increase in referral revenue thanks to their thriving community, both online and offline. Customers not only enjoy the drinks but also share their experiences, significantly increasing referral program enrolments.

air up’s strategy has effectively generated virality within school playgrounds and among the Gen Z demographic through their innovative approach of focusing on unique, flavour-enhancing drink bottles, thus turning hydration into a trendy and shareable activity. In young social circles, air up's products have become a topic of conversation and a badge of identity, encouraging them to participate in UGC social campaigns like #thinknewdrinknew and referral programs to spread the word even further.

Understanding the importance of broadening their demographic reach, air up has also strategically targeted the over 30s segment through clever PR campaigns that emphasise aspects such as health benefits, sustainability, and product innovation. One attention-grabbing example is their latest April Fool's campaign:

air up customer advocacy marketing campaign

Image source: air up website

The campaign was a component of air up's wider educational initiative aimed at growing the recognition of urine's importance as an indicator of hydration levels and overall health.

What's clear is that the tongue-in-cheek messaging is asking to be talked about among broad audiences – It's helping the brand to effectively expand its reach, while also fostering a diverse and buzzing brand community.


Value Beyond the Product

Customer advocacy within the non-alcoholic drinks sector extends beyond the product to include brand values and stories. As in other industries, communicating commitments like sustainability or community support inspires deeper brand connections and promotes customer advocacy.

For instance, TRIP, partnering with Calm app, enhances its offering with complimentary wellness tools, enriching customer experience and inspiring customers to become advocates not just for the product but for what the brand stands for.

Trip x Calm customer advocacy marketing campaign

Image source: Trip website


Positive CX and Leveraging Customer Feedback

Of course, the heart of brand advocacy lies exceptional customer experience (CX), a critical driver for fostering brand loyalty and sparking natural, word-of-mouth promotion. 

A clear example of this dynamic is illustrated by a Mention Me partner brand within the non-alcoholic drinks sector, renowned for their commitment to outstanding CX. Their success story can be partly attributed to their blueprint of incorporating customer feedback to refine and enhance service offerings. And their efforts have yielded remarkable results, with an enrolment rate that surpasses the industry average by 72%, and a staggering purchase rate of 61% that significantly outperforms the food and drinks industry's average of 19%. 

So how can other soft drinks brands leverage customer feedback in this way?

Net Promoter Scores (NPS) and similar satisfaction metrics compile feedback into a straightforward measure, revealing the quality of customer service you're providing.

However, tracking a static figure won't enhance your satisfaction ratings. To achieve this, analysing the underlying emotions in the feedback through sentiment analysis is essential. Rather than just gathering NPS scores, employ sentiment analysis to delve into the reasons behind customers’ ratings, whether high or low, and identify strategies to elevate these scores.



Armed with the right strategy, the fizz of excitement and the clink of success are within reach for non-alcoholic drinks brands who invest in customer advocacy marketing.  

Today's most forward-thinking soft drink brands are making strategic investments to provide a brand experience that's rooted in a deep comprehension of the customer. These brands distinguish themselves through their capacity to establish connections, foresee what their customers want, and instinctively understand which messages will engage their customers. By carefully tailoring their outreach they naturally cultivate a strong sense of brand loyalty.

Customer advocacy marketing uncovers customer sentiment and actions, offering insights into purchasing decisions and fostering organic growth. It provides a comprehensive understanding of customers, improving CX and retention.

Successful soft drinks brands start by creating a dedicated core of advocates. Then, by interacting with them in the right ways, they're able to get them promoting, purchasing, and referring more. By observing what works, they're able to expand their pool of advocates even further.

An advocacy marketing strategy significantly influences key performance indicators across all sectors:

  • Generally boosts new customer acquisition by 10-30%
  • Referred customers typically spend 25% more on their initial purchase
  • Brand advocates have a customer lifetime value (CLTV) that’s up to double
  • They engage more with personalised emails
  • They're 5x more likely to pass on recommendations

And as we've seen, the non-alcoholic drinks sector is a particularly high performing category.

Partner with Mention Me to tap into the power of advocacy, blending quality, community, and profitability into your brand strategy. Let’s develop a customer advocacy marketing plan that turns customer satisfaction into active promotion: Request a demo.

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