Testing Un-beer-lievable Alcohol Concepts

As Alex Baldwin’s character, Jack Donaghy, once told Tina Fey’s Liz Lemon in the hit series 30 Rock, “There are no bad ideas, Lemon. Just good ideas that go horribly bad.” For brands, good ideas that go “horribly bad” can manifest as logo redesigns that cause backlash or confusion, new products that fail to break through the noise of a crowded market or even brand and product names that don’t quite make their mark.

So how can brands have faith in the ideas they want to invest in? Concept testing offers science-backed predictions that give brands and marketers confidence in how their ideas will be perceived by the public. Testing can spot the best ideas, iron out the kinks that make good ones go bad, and can save you from launches you’ll regret.

Test Your Idea to Gauge Profit Potential

Every April Fool’s Day, brands bring the fun with silly product announcements. At System1, we took the opportunity to see how some of these imaginary concepts stack up against recent real product launches. Maybe some of the comedy ideas deserve a serious look? And maybe some of the real products would have been better off as a punchline.

Our Test Your Idea platform lets us find out. It provides predictive insights on concepts like product prototypes, product names, logos and more.

The platform assigns a 1-5 Star rating to each concept based on three key metrics. The higher the Star rating, the more profit potential the idea has.

  • Predicted Acceptance – This is the percentage of people who back the idea to succeed in the market (by buying shares in it in an imaginary trading scenario).
  • Speed of Trading – This measures how easy an idea is to process and is determined based on the time it takes a person to note whether they’d buy or sell shares in the idea. 
  • Emotional Pull – System1’s FaceTrace® details the emotions that people feel regarding each concept.

Read on to learn about the five alcohol concepts we tested and how their metrics varied.

Which Ideas are the Most Refreshing?

This April Fool’s Day, Bud Light jumped on the Bridgerton bandwagon with its Really Really Retro pack of hard seltzer, consisting of flavours like Afternoon Tea and Queen Cake. Recently, the brand actually brought its zero-carb beer, Bud Light NEXT, to market. Meanwhile, on National Beer Day on April 7, rival Miller Lite launched Beer Drops designed to make other light beers taste better. Some thought it might be a delayed April Fool’s Day joke, but they are actually available for purchase.

Adults who are avid Mountain Dew fans don’t have to worry about a hoax with the brand’s announcement that four flavours of Hard Mtn Dew are now available in the United States. Another more recent launch is BrewDog’s United For Ukraine New England IPA, of which 100% of the profits are being donated to humanitarian efforts in Ukraine.

So, which faux and real concepts scored highest with our Test Your Idea platform?

  • Hard Mtn Dew – 4.5 Stars  
  • Bud Light Really Really Retro – 3.2 Stars  
  • Bud Light NEXT – 2.7 Stars  
  • BrewDog United For Ukraine – 2.6 Stars  
  • Miller Lite Beer Drops – 1.3 Stars – Download the Test Your Idea report 

Hard sodas and seltzers are having a moment, and the combination of a strong brand and fashionable idea put Hard Mtn Dew on top with an impressive predicted acceptance score as well as high levels of happiness and surprise via FaceTrace. But despite being an April Fool’s Joke, Bud Light’s retro seltzers scored a respectable 3.2 Stars to come in second – higher than the brand’s actual NEXT launch. Respondents liked the packaging, the flavours and the variety of the flavours.

Meanwhile Miller Lite’s limited-edition Beer Drops faced the most pushback, with audiences expressing confusion on this new supplemental alcohol concept. Does that make it a bad idea? Not necessarily – but it’s one that testing showed needed better design and explanation before making it to market.

Is your brand looking to determine whether an idea will be profitable in the market? Sign up to be the first to know when the fully automated version of our Test Your Idea platform is available.