Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hello Kitty wine?

When asked by the LA Weekly blog writer if the Hello Kitty label will attract underage drinkers, the CEO of the company marketing the wine in the United States said, "There will always be a concern when it comes to marketing a brand identity that has appeal to both adults and children. As a company, we follow all industry standards and guidelines for age verification . . . My take on this: with over 60,000 Hello Kitty sku's in the marketplace and at 35 years old now, she is definitely ready for more adult skewed products. I don't think that the $15,000 Hello Kitty handbags are aimed at children either."

As the Marin Institute points out, "Hello Kitty's portfolio may have expanded from inexpensive coin purses for girls to include luxury fashion bags for women, but alcohol is not like any other product. It is not for children and adults alike, and should not be advertised as such."

According to a fact sheet about alcohol advertising and youth from the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth, "A study on the responses of young people to alcohol advertising found that underage youth are drawn to music, animals and people characters, story and humor in alcohol advertising. Ads that were liked by youth in the study were more likely to elicit responses from youth saying they wanted to purchase the brand and product advertised. The three most popular alcohol ads among youth in the study used animal characters as the leading actors."

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