Alcohol Marketing to Children

Following up on the post on the Drinkwise Campaign Launch report discussed before here the section on marketing to children was particularly worrying in terms of statistics.
There is a link between advertising and the amount that young people under-18 drink:
  • Alcohol advertising increases the likelihood that young people will start to consume alcohol
  • If young people already drink, alcohol adverts increase the likelihood they will drink more
  • 96% of 13-year-olds have encountered alcohol advertising in more than five different media
  • 0-15-year-olds view more alcohol adverts on TV than adults aged over 25

And where do they see this marketing?  These statistics taken from a piece of work done looking at awareness of UK 13 year old’s of alcohol marketing showed:

  • 60% special price offers
  • 53% billboard or posters
  • 55% in-store promotions
  • 77% on TV adverts
  • 66% branded clothing other items
  • 61% sponsorship of sports or teams
  • 34% sponsorship of music events/venues
  • 24% mobile logos or screensavers
  • 12% web pages or pop-ups
The industry has switched the focus of its estimated £800 million per annum marketing war chest to focus predominantly on digital marketing. As this is a form of communication heavily used by young people, this is a very worrying development. 67% of 12-15-year-olds have a social media profile and the voluntary safeguards that industry have put in place for television, radio and print advertising are virtually non-existent in the digital world.
“Whether deliberate or not, our results show that children are not protected from online marketing of alcohol”
Professor Theresa Marteau, University of Cambridge


10 thoughts on “Alcohol Marketing to Children

  1. I was reading this and comparing the exposure I had to alcohol ads & sponsorships as a kid to what kids are exposed to now, of course things have changed quite a bit 😉 . my dad had a Budweiser T-shirt that I loved and wanted one for myself! He tried to explain to me that it wouldn’t be very cool for an 8 year-old to go round sporting a Bud T shirt 🙂 . I think the exposure these days is like an additional layer, or aspect of peer pressure. On a more positive note, I saw a TV advert for a “nonalcoholic beverage” to enjoy during the holidays, during the evening news hour! I felt a little hopeful 🙂 xx

    1. Hey Lori Happy to see an ad for a non-alcoholic beverage during the holidays – progress as you say 🙂 xx

  2. Really good poignant post. I posted the video on facebook and someone commented saying it had made them think about their drinking infront of his children 🙂 So that is a good start!!!

    1. Hi Theresa Thank you for reading and commenting on my blog. Glad that the share of the video on FB prompted some reflection 🙂

  3. The industry here (US,) uses animals in their marketing. We know children like animals and will “tune into” them. In fact, on bottles, animals on labels sell more wine.
    This is the most interesting site!
    Thank you!

    1. Thanks for that untipsy. Geez I had no idea that they used animals. When I was drinking I would be drawn to funny bottle labels but don’t remember animals specifically. You are most welcome!

  4. This is shockingly familiar. The wrong type of power in the wrong hands. We could be giving so much more to our children. We have the tools to heal our world. It only means more work for the rest of us, which I gladly accept. The rules are steep at this house when it comes to social media engagement. Sometimes I think I am behind the times, but after reading this, I couldn’t be more thrilled with my dated perspective. Thank you for sharing these stats. I’ve never liked collecting/researching them and am especially grateful for reading them. My love and gratitude, Lisa

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