March 4, 2021

Making SENTZ of the hard seltzer category with brand relaunch

SENCE, one of the very first hard seltzers to launch in 2019, has overhauled its recipe, brand and consumer positioning and relaunched as SENTZ.

SENTZ (4% ABV/330ml) is the UK’s first 100% natural hard seltzer with added minerals. It has a fermented fruit alcohol base and is available in a trio of bold cocktail-inspired flavours featuring Scottish raspberries, Brazilian oranges, cantaloupe and watermelon with three distinct palate profiles; tangy, sweet and spiced. It is proudly British and uses sparkling spring water that is filtered through the Oolitic limestone of the Cotswold Hills.

In a market-first, the range boasts the addition of three minerals- calcium, magnesium and potassium – which SENTZ is calling a ‘hard seltzer plus’. Calcium is great for bone and teeth formation. Magnesium is known to provide over 300 biochemical reactions in the body to support the immune system, muscle and nerve function. Potassium is known to have kidney and heart benefits.

The team behind SENTZ undertook a detailed programme of consumer research over seven months to understand the growing hard seltzer market, looking at taste, range and drinking occasions. The insight led the brand to spot a gap in the market for a hard seltzer which was focused on quality and 100% natural ingredients, whilst retaining a fun and playful brand positioning.

Xavier Warburton, founder of SENTZ said: “Our original hard seltzer was launched when there was little market intelligence. Since then, the category has evolved at pace with the advent of large brands jumping onboard the hard-seltzer trend which demonstrates confidence in the category and forecast continued growth.

“We are on a mission to change the perception that low calorie alcoholic drinks have to taste bad or be full of sugar or artificial ingredients.”

The British drinks brand spoke to over 4,500 consumers and used this insight to go back to the drawing board to develop SENTZ; a sharper more unique brand that is clearly differentiated from the competition. The key USPs are added minerals, fruits of provenance, 100% natural ingredients, bold flavours and being a British brand produced in the UK.

The three innovative flavour combinations – Sweet Melon & Mint, Tangy Raspberry & Lime and Spiced Orange & Ginger – were the winners from the market research with each product appealing to a different consumer taste palates. Everyone will have their favourite.

SENTZ has no artificial flavourings, sweeteners or colourings and has a 4% alcohol fermented fruit base with fruits of provenance along with British sparkling spring water from the Cotswolds. It boasts ZERO carbs, ZERO sugar and 100% natural (gluten free and vegan) ingredients.

Xavier Warburton adds: “Balancing three minerals with the fruits of provenance has had its challenges but we’re proud of our product and excited to finally get it out there. SENTZ is positioned as a product for the growing community of discerning drinkers looking to live a vibrant lifestyle. It allows consumers to have a good-time, guilt free.”

SENTZ is committed to supporting The Thirst Project which works with young people to end the global water crisis by building freshwater wells in developing countries to provide clean water and sanitation. For every 330ml can sold, SENTZ pledges 19-litres of clean drinking water to communities in need.

As Kantar’s recent research suggests, the hard seltzer category is gathering pace with sales hitting £12m but the rush to launch products has seen a dip in quality and experience. SENTZ is addressing this quality issue head on with a range that delivers on quality and experience for the long term. 

Kantar head of alcohol, Richard Lee, said: “The data suggested some brands weren’t delivering on taste, he added. “When you look at repeat rates for hard seltzers and the proportion of shoppers coming back to buy them again, it is about 23% – lower than the average for the RTD category. There’s clearly interest and excitement but for some it’s not converting into the taste experience they’re looking for.

The SENTZ range launches in February 2021 in retail with 330ml cans and in on-trade with unique 330ml and 750ml glass bottles.