By the end of this month, it will finally be summertime. For those of us in cold-weather states, it seemed like summer was never going to come, but now it’s finally time to enjoy all the fun activities, food and beverages of the season. My summer plans include a long summer reading list, fun runs and backyard parties. But summer also signifies some great things in the beverage industry, including engaging marketing programs.

Although Father’s Day technically still is in the spring, the holiday in my family usually signifies the start of our many summer holiday and birthday get-togethers and is always a relaxing, fun day. Recognizing the fun that families associate with their dads and Father’s Day, Speyburn Single Malt Scotch Whisky announced its Reconnect Father’s Day Photo Contest for outdoors enthusiasts, running through June 30. Speyburn consumers and outdoors enthusiasts alike can upload a photo
of a favorite trip or outdoor adventure with the dads in their lives, along with a 100-word description of the “reconnect moment” to the Speyburn Facebook page. Once they have entered, fans can invite family and friends to vote for their submission. The submission with the most votes will win a prize package from Speyburn and a $500 Orvis gift card. One runner-up also will receive a $100 Orvis gift certificate and Speyburn merchandise.

Also this summer, Heineken USA is hosting the Dos Equis Most Interesting Culinary Exploration retail program. Adult consumers of legal drinking age can harness their cooking skill levels and explore their culinary side. Program elements will inspire consumers to create their own culinary dishes and enter them online for the chance to win one of three spots on The Most Interesting Culinary Trip of a Lifetime to Oaxaca, Mexico, the company says. In-store, custom-designed displays and point-of-sales materials including pole toppers, case stackers, price cards, tuck cards, cooler decals, and The Most Interesting Man standee, along with promotional SnapTag technology on all Dos Equis Lager and Ambar six- and 12-packs, will direct consumers online to learn how to enter the competition and receive other culinary-inspired rewards from Dos Equis.

The promotion also will include channel-specific, cross-merchandising instant redeemable coupons and mail-in rebate offers where applicable on items including Kettle potato chips and Master of Mixes cocktail mixes to drive secondary display opportunities and higher basket rings for retailers, the company says.

 “In addition to craving adventure, the Dos Equis consumer enjoys a foodie lifestyle,” said Kirsten Walpert, Dos Equis brand manager for Heineken USA, in a statement. “Seventy percent of our consumers enjoy being creative in the kitchen, [and] 80 percent enjoy trying different types of foods and prefer cooking with fresh food rather than canned or frozen. The Dos Equis Most Interesting Culinary Exploration program will enable retailers to drive traffic throughout multiple sections of their stores and capitalize on the summer season.”

 Summer also is a great time to try the seasonal offerings at retail channels and foodservice outlets. To learn about the latest foodservice trends that are impacting beverages, be sure to check out our Channel Strategies article in our July issue.