Roll out the barrel: multicultural drinking attitudes and associated behaviors

Multicultural women enjoying cocktails outside

Download a free sample of our research.

Our sample contains 7 pages of content outlining consumptions patterns for multicultural Americans.  Members can access 18 pages of specific insights on wine, beer and spirits, and access hundreds of slides of food and beverage insights on our platform.

Graphs detailing alcohol consumption for Hispanics, African-Americans and Millenials

You probably hear market researchers talk quite a bit about “drinking culture,” but very few are able to shed light on multicultural alcoholic beverage consumption.

Knowing what multicultural America drinks – and more importantly, why – can help marketers better appeal to these fast-growing segments. We addressed these nuances in an extension of our Food & Beverage Initiative, fielded in October 2018. Our nationally-representative sample of 2,877 respondents gave us powerful insights as to what matters most for multicultural drinking experiences, as well as how age and gender mix things up.

So what did we find at the bottom of the bottle? Let’s take a look:

1. African-Americans peak early in adopting new alcoholic drinks, while Asians peak later

Being young is all about experimenting and finding your drink of choice, whether it’s a cosmo, a White Russian, wine, or just a good ol’ pilsner. But what our research shows is that different segments are more exploratory with their drinks at different times.

African-American drinkers peak the earliest, with almost 90% of 22-27 year-olds willing to try new drinks. But this number drops to below 60% for African-Americans who are 33-38. On the other hand, Asian drinkers are most willing to experiment with new drinks when they’re 33-38.

Across all ethnic segments, Boomer+ drinkers are much less interested in new drinks. But among these older consumers, about half still enjoy drinking something new from time to time.

2. Hispanic drinkers have the highest brand loyalty for alcoholic beverages

Whether at the bar or the liquor store, deciding what drink to get can be a complicated process. When we asked people what matters when choosing one beverage over another, over 80% of all ethnic segments said taste was an important factor. For White, African-American, and Asian drinkers, the second most important feature is price – but for Hispanics, brand is the solid number-two pick at 45%.

Across ethnicity, we also found that men care more about brand, while women over-index on taste as an important consideration. Additionally, alcoholic content is the least important factor for all segments.

3. Hispanics drink wine for its social status, but Asians choose it for its healthier reputation

Of our four ethnic categories, Asian drinkers are the most likely to choose wine. This demand for wine helps explain why Asians over-index in citing the “elevated dining experience” as a reason to drink alcohol. But when asked about their wine preferences, it is actually the drink’s healthier reputation that draws them in. It is Hispanic drinkers who are more likely to drink wine because of its “sophisticated” reputation.

Hispanic wine drinking also differs in terms of its gender dynamics. For White, African-American, and Asian drinkers, men tend towards reds and women towards whites. But for Hispanic men and women, it’s the reverse – Hispanic men report drinking white wine (59%) at a higher rate than Hispanic women (52%).

If your thirst for insights still hasn’t been quenched, data and visuals for these insights – and more! – are in the linked files above.

Understanding how multicultural America drinks is essential for marketing to these already-powerful and ever-growing segments. If you are interested in joining peer-to-peer calls with non-competitive members to share insights and discuss strategies to manage this issue, exploring custom qualitative or quantitative research for your brand or category, or having an initial conversation with our consulting team about methods to deal with this topic, please contact your Client Services Representative.