Glenlivet Hero 2

Website and CRM strategy The Glenlivet

How we are using digital to keep The Glenlivet on top in a recommendation-driven market thanks to the power of compelling content

Glenlivet Bottle

The Context

Advocacy today comes from everywhere, so recognising and rewarding advocates in an authentic way is vital. This is of particular importance when you are the brand leader – you are obliged to assume a leadership position. As the world’s number one-selling single malt, The Glenlivet has always recognised this and seen digital as providing a way to reward advocates on a mass scale. 

The Guardians of The Glenlivet is the global CRM programme aimed at driving love and recommendation. It had been successful, acquiring more than 250,000 members since its 2011 launch. However, by 2015 the CRM programme, along with the rest of The Glenlivet’s digital estate, had begun to stagnate. We at Zone were charged with revitalising the distiller’s digital brand. 

Glenliver Website

The Strategy

We identified two key challenges. The first was that of finding differentiation in such a fiercely competitive category as the single-malt market – not just between one ‘Glen’ and another, but also from the myriad of non-Scotch challenger brands from overseas. The second was that the world of single malt is very much a recommendation category – and credibility is a sought-after commodity. 

We were fortunate that our client had a unique claim that would help us meet both of these challenges – it was the single malt that started it all, becoming the first licensed distillery in the parish of Glenlivet back in 1824. This led to our “original thinking” proposition and a commitment to use digital to help our client stand out from the Glens with a consistent, emotional and compelling celebration of original thinking.

We would do this by engineering a new universal digital strategy, one that could be rolled out both on The Glenlivet’s global property and various regional sections. It would refocus the website, moving from a brochure style to becoming a broadcaster of engaging content, and see the CRM platform abandon its newsletter-style approach to offer personalised, tailored content to encourage sharing and advocacy.

The Results

Since relaunching The Glenlivet’s digital property in spring 2016, our work has had an immediate – and considerable – impact. For the key Guardians of The Glenlivet email, open rates and click-through rates have increased by nearly 40 per cent. What’s more, where we have built up enough implicit profiling information to use targeted personalised emails, we are seeing open rates of nearly 70 per cent and a CTR of one in three. With the website, we are seeing a year-on-year increase in page views of 58 per cent, while the number of monthly unique users is up 34 per cent.


increase in email open rates

1 in 3

Email click-through rate


Uplift in page views