Last year, 100,000 consumers visited the Great British Pubs website during the Cheer Up January campaign and, the participating pubs saw a 5.6% uplift in drinks volumes during the month compared to those not involved.
This year, a greater range of new drinks products and old favourites will be on offer, including draught and bottled beers, Guinness, ciders, Gordon’s gin, non-alcoholic beers and soft drinks.
The pubco has joined forces with brewing partners such as Heineken, Budweiser, Diageo and Molson Coors to carry out the initiative in January 2020.
Ei Group customer director Helen Cook said: “January is a notoriously challenging month for pubs so we wanted to do something that supports our publicans and helps them drive footfall during the post-Christmas lull.
“Our aim with this initiative is to remind consumers that the pub is a great place to socialise no matter what time of year – and can help beat the January blues.
“We know that people want to cut down after the indulgences of the festive season, so are delighted to have extended the offer this year to include a broader range of drinks making it more accessible to people who might want low or no-alcohol options.”
A dedicated Cheer Up January social media campaign, online advertising and PoS in participating pubs will raise awareness of the giveaway among consumers.
During the promotion, customers will be able to find the pubs taking part and redeem their free drink via the app feature on the Great British Pubs website – this will be available in over 1,000 Ei Publican Partnerships pubs across the UK from 2-19 January 2020.
Rewarding the regulars
Cook continued: “Feedback from our publicans last year was incredibly positive with more than 80% of participants saying they’d like to do it again. We are very much looking forward to supporting them further in January.”
The King’s Arms in Okehampton, Devon, was among hundreds of Ei Publican Partnerships’ publicans who took part in last year’s campaign and recommends others should get involved.
Rob Bass, from the pub, said: “It helped January trade. It is great timing because, post-Christmas, many people are feeling melancholy and customers said it was a bonus to have a free pint in January.
“We used our full allocation of free drinks and most people coming in bought another pint or two.
“It rewarded our regulars and we had some new customers in too. We were the only pub in town to be doing it, so it also gave us a point of difference. It’s really easy to get involved as everything is done for you.”