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Brown-Forman: Shoppers’ Rising Expectation of Convenience Demands Contextual Commerce

Shoppers’ Expectation of Convenience Demands Contextual Commerce

As consumers increasingly expect commerce integrated into their day-to-day lives, spirits giant Brown-Forman, parent company of Jack Daniel’s, is looking to create more immersive online shopping experiences.

In an interview with PYMNTS, Lynette Green, Brown-Forman’s integrated marketing communications manager, omnichannel for the USA and Canada, discussed these emerging opportunities for contextual commerce.

“I’m really excited about how I can work with my various tech partners to find ways to integrate shoppable moments for our whiskey drinkers into what we would call depth programming or brand experiences,” Green said. “I think we’ve gotten into an age right now where consumers just expect brands to be wherever they are. … We’ve gotten to the point where we just expect that anything that we’re going to want to buy or need or use will just be at our feet.”

Green cited the example of Jack Daniel’s Gentleman Jack’s brand’s sponsorship of art and music exhibition Art, Beats & Lyrics, noting that there is an opportunity to integrate add-to-cart moments into the experience.

These kinds of integrations can be especially useful for spirits brands given that loyalty in the spirits industry is “an illusion,” per Green, with consumers tending to explore and try different brands.

“We know from proprietary research that spirits drinkers are promiscuous,” Green said. “They drink lots of different things.”

The goal is to be top of mind during the shopping journey and secure a place in the customer’s cart, increasing the likelihood of repeat purchases. Plus, with regulations limiting spirits brands’ retail media options, contextual commerce becomes all the more important as being among the few options for targeted advertising.

eCommerce is on the rise, and the more consumers purchase anything online, the more they purchase everything online. The PYMNTS Intelligence study “How the World Does Digital: Daily Digital Engagement Hits New Heights,” which drew from a survey of more than 17,500 consumers in 11 markets that account for 50% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP), found that a 10% rise in digital shopping activities is linked to a 6.9% increase in digital grocery orders and a 6.4% boost in digital restaurant ordering.

Additionally, the alcoholic beverage eCommerce space has evolved quicky in recent years. Green noted that following the pandemic accelerating the growth of online shopping for spirits, 2023 marked a stabilization period, revealing the long-term impact of online and in-store shopping relationships.

“2023 was the year that we started to really see what this new kind of shopping relationship between online and in-store might look like,” Green said, noting a rise in demand for in-store pickup especially.

Looking ahead, Green said she anticipates a continued focus on artificial intelligence integration and consolidation within the industry. The shift toward cookie-less marketing will lead to more collaborations with data companies and retail networks, enabling targeted advertising based on first-party consumer data.

“I think we’re … going to see … much more integration of access across other platforms,” Green added. “We’re already seeing it a little bit, where brands are starting to put things like QR codes in online video and television. You’re just going to see more of that crossover.”