How Johnnie Walker engages Asian consumers

David Tiltman

Asia has turned into a crucial market for drinks giant Diageo. The company's Asia-Pacific sales have been growing at a double-digit rate, compared with far slower expansion in North America and Europe.

Asia offers huge opportunities for Diageo, particularly for its premium spirits portfolio. These opportunities reflect rising incomes and a taste for luxury among the new middle-classes.

When it comes to appealing to these consumers, Johnnie Walker is one of the company's key brands. The premium scotch has used its 'Keep walking' global positioning, but has taken steps to make it locally relevant. In 2011, Diageo claimed that its premium scotch range was growing at 16% in Asia-Pacific, double the category performance.

Speaking at the 2012 Asian Marketing Effectiveness Festival, James Thompson, Diageo's Chief Marketing Officer for Asia-Pacific, revealed some of the tactics Johnnie Walker has used over the past year to connect with Asian consumers, and particularly those in China.