A recent survey of alcohol consumer behaviors in the United States, among people who drink craft beer brands at least once a week, showed that craft beer brands vary widely in terms of trial rates, but also in their ability to convert trial into regular usage. The research covered 17 of the largest craft beer brands.
Trial rates vary widely driven by the large differences in product availability, ranging from 76% for Samuel Adams Boston Lager to only 9% for Boulevard. However, it was tiny Boulevard that had the highest ability to convert triers into regular users of the brand, as 19% of those who have tried the brand have become regular users. Several brands tied for second place, with Blue Moon Belgian White Ale, Samuel Adams Boston Lager, and Bell’s each converting 17% of their triers into regular users. The listed brand with the lowest ability to convert triers to regular users was Anchor Steam, at 6%.
Conversely, all craft beer brands suffer from having a high share of triers not consume the brand on either a regular or an occasional basis. By this measure, Landshark Lager has lost the highest proportion of its triers, 65%. Samuel Adams Boston Lager has lost the lowest share of its triers, at 43%.
“Converting triers into regular usage is among the most critical factors for long-term success of beverage brands,” said David Decker, President, Consumer Edge Insight. “This is particularly important in the craft beer segment due to the proliferation of brands and varieties that consumers have to choose from. All craft beer brands suffer from losing a fairly high portion of their triers. While two of the largest craft brands, Samuel Adams Boston Lager and Blue Moon Belgian White Ale, are among the top scorers in terms of converting triers to regular users, it was interesting to note that two much smaller brands, Boulevard and Bell’s also did well. This performance suggests that Boulevard and Bell’s should do well as they expand their distribution.”