VizSense x Hornitos: A Shot Worth Taking [Highly Commended Campaign]


image displaying award won from IPMA

Highly Commended: International Performance Marketing Awards: Best Influencer Marketing Campaign

How a popular tequila brand increased sales by 37% in an untapped market

Founded to honor Mexican Independence Day, Hornitos’ mission is to encourage their consumers to break tradition and be bold. By taking chances, they have successfully redefined the tequila industry and set the standard for Mexican Tequila for the past 70 years.

The Challenge: Hornitos’ Pain Points

In 2020, the alcohol industry saw massive shifts in consumption habits. With the majority of bars closed, the industry saw a 90% estimated decrease in on-premise sales from the previous year. According to Nielsen, on-premise sales account for approximately 45% of total beverage alcohol sales in dollars, presenting alcohol brands the challenge to reach consumers while giving them reasons to celebrate responsibly at home.

Hornitos’ regional sales team saw gaps in their brand strategy for the Ohio market. They tasked VizSense with elevating brand consideration and awareness while driving conversions in consumers aged 25-40 in Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland, Ohio during a 45-day activation.

Our Solution: How VizSense Helped

VizSense conducted in-depth market research to deploy a winning strategy. Our data analysts reviewed over 13,112 unique data points across 12,017 keywords surrounding Hornitos’ Tequila and 6 of their direct competitors within the Mexican Tequila category. We then identified key demographics and messaging that would best resonate with consumers across the industry.

Influencer Strategy

Using our proprietary technology, we identified, vetted, and contracted unique influencers in order to hyper-target our key audiences based on age, affinities, interests, and where they live. We partnered with voices of authority like local mixologists and Ohio-centered content creators to showcase the quality of Hornitos’ product while discussing the tequila’s notes and profile

Message Strategy

VizSense’s research found gaps in Hornitos’ current message strategy. The brand typically limited its message strategy to be centered around promoting its product for taking shots. However, our research found Hornitos was the only product across the 7 brands analyzed that is valued for both shots and mixing -- while, typically, their competitors are valued for one over the other.

With more people staying at home and drinking casually, we decided to shift our campaign messaging to focus our content to crafting the perfect mixed drink.

Digital Strategy

With our hyper-targeted location strategy, we wanted to ensure our paid strategy was equally zoned in. We utilized Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest platforms. Pinterest ads especially targeted Hornitos’ audience by targeting people who were actively searching for tequila drink recipes in our key Ohio markets. This allowed us to reach individuals with the highest propensity to buy while providing them with valued information they were already searching for.

The Results

Our research-backed message strategy paired with our hyper-targeted paid approach allowed VizSense to deploy a winning activation. VizSense successfully expanded awareness for Hornitos into untapped audiences in the state of Ohio and increased sales by over 37% in our three key markets. Our cocktail recipe strategy was a hit, garnering 22% higher engagement than the shot-focused content.



In our 3 target cities



In our 3 target cities



Including likes, comments, shares, saves, and clicks



In the 3 key markets where the influencer campaign was, sales increased by 37.3% on average YoY


Across 15 hand-picked influencers, our campaign created 72 pieces of user-generated content to use across all marketing materials, including 44 Instagram Posts and 28+ Instagram Stories. Our client repurposed 8 out of the 44 Instagram Posts for other marketing materials.

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