This week marks the one-year anniversary of the official launch of Tanduay Asian Rum in the United States. The international spirits brand, which has been ranked the second-largest-selling rum brand in the world (by case sales) for the last few years, was virtually unknown in this country when it landed on American soil last July. Over the past twelve months, the company has worked to increase awareness of the brand through a robust marketing campaign that has included advertising, social media, public relations, sampling, events, dedicated brand sales reps and the sponsorship of a professional hockey team.
“Tanduay has a long history of producing top-quality, award-winning rums since the company’s inception in 1854,” remarked Whit Repp, Vice President of Marketing for Brand Action Team, Tanduay’s agency of record. “Celebrating the one-year anniversary of our brand in the U.S. is a just a small stepping stone on a path toward building our own history here, as we have done in the Philippines.”
Distribution that began in Connecticut and South Florida has already expanded to include the entire state of Florida, Tennessee, select retail outlets in California and most recently, Illinois. Within these markets, Tanduay is being sold in over 700 accounts, 50% of which are on-premise. The brand’s key account managers have been highly active in their markets, securing menu placements, sponsoring local events, and identifying strategic sampling opportunities, all of which have resulted in a 23% conversion rate, far outperforming the 15% industry standard.
Tanduay is expecting to grow volume by 267% in 2015 through a combination of organic growth and further market expansion. Sales increases are expected to continue, led in part by the high conversion rate and as a result of the comprehensive social media and public relations campaigns that have been, and will continue to support consumer outreach. The brand’s Facebook page has grown 10-fold since December and touts over 41,000 likes—a number which continues to rise.
“When consumers see us in store, they’re familiar with our brand,” said Repp. “Our team has done an incredible job of growing our presence in the markets we’re in through targeted social media programs that have achieved very high impressions and significantly higher-than-average engagement levels.”
Another factor contributing to the brand’s growth is its demonstrated ability to capture awards in high-profile competitions. Just a few months ago, Tanduay’s silver expression was awarded a Double Gold Medal and named Best White Rum at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. This accolade was followed swiftly by another major win for the silver rum when it took home a Gold medal at the 2014 Rum Renaissance. The year prior, Tanduay’s gold expression not only secured a Gold medal at the Miami-based rum festival, but was also named Best in Class, surpassing all other gold rums judged at the event.