WKD is to introduce a line of 15% abv liqueurs designed for “layering” under the sub-brand WKD Vibe.
The range, which rolls out from this month, would “expand the WKD brand footprint and reinvigorate the shots category” owner SHS Drinks said.
Initially, WKD Vibe would launch with five variants: a duo of clear liqueurs in Blue Raspberry and Tropical flavours, along with creamy liqueurs in Blue Raspberry, Piña Colada and Strawberry.
The two clear variants would have an rsp of £10 per 500ml bottle, with the creamy flavours commanding a higher price of £13, SHS Drinks said.
The range had been inspired by “layering” trends seen in the on-trade with serves like the Baby Guinness and the Jammie Dodger, said Alison Gray, head of brand for WKD at SHS Drinks.
WKD Vibe, she said, would offer drinkers “that exciting Instagram-able moment that they get in the on-trade” at pre and post-night out occasions.
Gray said the liqueurs were designed to be sold and drunk together, with drinkers slowly pouring the creamy liqueur over the back of a spoon onto a WKD Vibe clear liqueur. They could, however, swap out the clear liqueur for another spirit or a WKD RTD for a lower abv shot.
“We understand that buying two bottles of spirits is quite a big ask of some of our consumers,” she said. “So the versatility that they layer with our RTDs or other mainstream vodkas will help get the concept across.”
“We’re expecting lots of weird and wonderful serves to be developed, and not necessarily by us,” she added.
WKD Vibe would initially be available in convenience stores from December, Gray said, adding SHS Drinks was “in conversations with all of the mults” about stocking the range from the new year.
The launch will be supported from January 2024 by a £1m marketing spend comprising a Love Island influencer campaign, as well as interactive PoS and in-store features under the ‘Find Your Vibe’ campaign theme, and WKD Vibe themed “party nights” to drive trial in the on-trade.
The diversification comes with sales of WKD – the UK’s number one RTD brand – in decline. The brand is worth £47.6m, down 5.9% from last year [NIQ 52 we 9 September].
Last year WKD stepped into enhanced RTDs with a 7% abv line of boozy energy drinks, WKD X, while in 2020 it revamped WKD MXD, its 5% abv canned cocktail range.