AIPIA Americas Summit preview

From France to China & Sweden, The Absolut Company global brand manager talks about Malibu Rum NFC packaging

By Jenny Eagle contact

- Last updated on GMT

Malibu is testing and scaling NFC technology and marketing strategy. Photo: The Absolut Company.
Malibu is testing and scaling NFC technology and marketing strategy. Photo: The Absolut Company.
'Malibu consumers are young, social, digital natives and brands need to be able to speak to them in the right place, at the right time', according to Caitriona Murphy, global brand manager, The Absolut Company.

Murphy joined Pernod Ricard in 2013 as a graduate and has since enjoyed an international career with the company. First in France, then she moved to China; ‘Where I experienced the fast paced digital and technological development that is happening there – I witnessed just how connected and in touch consumers are in that part of the world, and what the future might look like for western markets’. 

'Always-on' consumer presence

Then she moved to Sweden to work with The Absolut Company (another company within Pernod Ricard), where she saw ‘how they too were trying to tap into this ‘always-on’ consumer and drive brand presence at key moments in the consumer journey’. 

In her current role, she focuses on channel marketing for Malibu Rum and Kahlúa, and its Connected Bottles project and she will be speaking at the Active & Intelligent Packaging​ Summit Americas, (June 4-5, 2018), at the Westin Hotel, in Jersey City, US.  

In her speech The Malibu Approach. Creating the Consumer Experience of the Future​ 10:50am-11:20am, June 4, Murphy will talk about the Malibu approach to Smart Packaging and presenting its journey with Connected Bottles so far, as well as the challenges and learnings it has taken along the way.

Capture

Malibu Rum is a booming brand and the team here focuses on innovative and creative marketing that connects with our consumers​," she said.

We saw an opportunity to do this straight from the store shelf, and build one to one relationships through adding technology to our bottle. By integrating NFC (Near-Field Communication) into the packaging, we create a seamless experience for our consumers and tap into the ‘contactless’ and mobile first behavior that they are now adopting​.

"As this trend develops, consumers will expect all brands to deliver more relevant services, experiences and content and Malibu will be able to do this through our most iconic asset – the bottle itself.​"

Competitive market

According to Murphy, NFC has been around for some time but Malibu was the first brand to take it to scale and deliver the largest release of NFC ​bottles back in 2016.  

NFC technology allows two separate chip-enabled devices to pass small amounts of data between each other with very little energy. A smartphone or tablet can then pull data from the NFC-powered product if the mobile device owner places it close to the package. NFC technology can be a valuable marketing tool if businesses know exactly how they want to engage their audience.

More brands are now picking up on NFC packaging, which we see as really exciting – Malibu is all about leading the way in testing and scaling new technology and marketing strategy​,” she added. 

Now we have an intelligent bottle – it’s time to take the opportunity it presents​. 

In a competitive market, we need to create new channels to reach consumers, but even more importantly, make use of the information they choose to share with us to give them better experiences with the brand​. 

The worst thing we can do is have someone tap our bottle and redirect them to meaningless content. Our consumers demand high quality and relevant conversation that taps into their passion points and brands that don’t deliver will have no space to play – especially in the crucial last three feet​.”

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