UK agency helps spirits brand drive brand awareness in Amazon’s store*

Setting the objective

Founded in Glasgow in 1844, Whyte & Mackay is a global spirits company that produces a collection of multiple award-winning single malt whiskies and houses several spirit brands under their name, including Jura, The Woodsman, Tamnavulin, and Harveys. Though they started advertising on Amazon.co.uk in 2016, Whyte & Mackay started working with Croud, a full-service digital agency, to support their advertising campaigns during the holiday season in August 2020. Their goal was to increase brand growth and discovery, and drive awareness with new-to-brand shoppers in the crowded spirits category. Croud’s challenge was to maintain consistent brand messaging throughout all channels and touch points.

“Operating in a fast-paced category, we needed a partner to help us accelerate our brands within the ever-evolving digital space. As the pandemic led to faster online shopping growth, we needed to ensure we had a partner who had the skills and expertise to adapt and jump on the newest opportunities within Amazon.”

— Jaimie Anderson, European Marketing Planner, Whyte & Mackay

Prepping for the holidays

For the lead-in to holiday, the team at Croud worked to get Whyte & Mackay’s products retail ready by auditing the brand’s products, marketing content, and previous advertising campaigns. “We knew it was critical to get our products retail ready before we increased our visibility with ads,” says Andy Siviter, Director of Commerce and Data Operations at Croud. “We wanted to use A+ content and Stores to ensure a consistent brand experience for shoppers at every touch point.” They did this by:

  • Getting products retail ready to help improve engagement and SEO performance.
  • Utilizing A+ content and optimizing titles, bullets, and descriptions, as well as adding new images and product videos.
  • Building and optimizing Stores to showcase gifting-specific creative for the holidays.

“Discovery in this category requires findability and brilliant creative and storytelling. We’ve tried to create a consistent experience at every Amazon touch point using A+ content, Stores, and rich ad creative and video. It’s far more than just being retail-ready. Knowing the lifecycle stage and unique attributes of each brand is key to knowing how to apply a full-funnel Amazon strategy for each.”

— Jaimie Anderson, European Marketing Planner, Whyte & Mackay

Implementing a full-funnel strategy

During the holiday season, Croud used a full range of sponsored ads products to help meet Whyte & Mackay’s goal of boosting brand visibility and awareness with new-to-brand shoppers on Amazon. Here is a breakdown of the product strategies used:

  • Sponsored Products: Croud used Sponsored Products to help brand loyalty and conversion at the lower funnel with keyword targeting on both brand and category keywords. They used auto-targeted campaigns with controlled match types to help the brand grow its reach with new in-market audiences in the category.
  • Sponsored Brands: Sponsored Brands helped Whyte & Mackay build awareness on keyword searches and reach shoppers who were in the consideration phase of the purchase journey, as they were searching for similar brands and products.
  • Sponsored Brands video: As soon as Sponsored Brands video launched in the UK in August 2020, Croud leveraged the new ad product to help increase brand awareness. Croud used Sponsored Brands video to help with brand discovery, as the ads link customers directly to the product detail page where they can learn more and purchase.
  • Sponsored Display: Croud utilized Sponsored Display strategies for product targeting to cross-sell Whyte & Mackay’s products with other best-selling products in the category. They also tested a variety of audience types and views remarketing to support with awareness goals.

Measuring success

Compared to the year prior, Croud helped Whyte & Mackay achieve a 32% decrease in advertising cost of sales (ACOS) in 2020.1 They also helped the brand drive a 323% uplift in revenue with an increased new-to-brand rate of 74%.2 During the key gifting months of November and December, the optimizations in the Store and Sponsored Brand campaigns for Whyte & Mackay's Jura whisky helped to increase the Store page views by 3,000% and drive sales by 937%.3

* Alcohol ads can only run in the following locales: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Germany, France, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, and the UK. Please visit our Creative acceptance policies for requirements that apply to alcohol ads in permitted locales.

1-3 Advertiser-provided data, UK, 2020.