Gendered marketing has always been suspect and yet in 2023, drinks brands are still using it as a maniacal tool for pushing products. The number of low-calorie, weight-loss drinks — almost exclusively marketed to women — available is astounding, and the phenomenon not only alienates customers but undermines their taste. If the focus is placed entirely on calories instead of the quality of the product itself, what does this say about the product’s target market?

One of the first things you’re taught in the service industry is to never assume what people are going to like, including wine, beer, and spirits. An important step in overcoming gendered assumptions is learning that it’s not just men who enjoy whiskey; people enjoy whiskey.

With such clear expectations in the service industry, it’s shocking to see such grand marketing brushstrokes made by drinks brands touting that one product is specifically for one gender. Not only is it offensive, but it rarely even works. Plus, with so many beverage options available today, people are easily able to find a product that meets their needs organically. At the end of the day, taste transcends marketing. Well, at least it should.

On this episode of the “VinePair Podcast,” Joanna and Zach discuss the badly outdated, problematic, yet still alarmingly widespread practice of gendered marketing for beverage alcohol products. Tune in for more.

Zach is drinking: Giovanni Rosso Barolo

Joanna is drinking: Diwald “Luft & Liebe” Grüner Veltliner

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