SVEDKA: Voted #1 Vodka of 2033

Category: Sustained Success
Brand/Client: SVEDKA / Spirits Marque One LLC
Primary Agency: Spirits Marque One LLC

STRATEGIC CHALLENGE

Could Another Swedish Vodka Take on Absolut?
SVEDKA: from upstart to challenger to contender in 5 years.

In 2005, SVEDKA had an established Value Brand with sales nearing half a million cases: a critical industry benchmark. We had created a niche by being the first Brand to introduce an imported, high quality vodka at an affordable price, and we had been gaining traction predominantly in liquor stores, but not in higher-profile on-premise bars and restaurants.

We had little brand visibility; we were 17th in overall sales, and #5 in imports – outsold by Absolut 10 to 1 and Stoli by 4 to 1. We had reached a turning point: Either keep growing modestly with a value position or invest in creating the first "cheap chic" Vodka Brand. To succeed at the latter we faced three seemingly insurmountable hurdles: