BACARDI GOES AFTER ETHNIC CONSUMERS

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Bacardi-Martini USA plans to dial up 1998 ad spending 8%, to $27 million, as it focuses on ethnic marketing.

The marketer, which tapped Burrell Communications Group, Chicago, last year, is hoping a big push in this niche will boost sales of its No. 1-selling rum.

"We're going to go strongly after the ethnic market" said Marcos Perez, marketing manager.

Bacardi rum is the top selling spirits brand in the U.S., with 1996 sales of 6.1 million cases, according to industry newsletter Impact.

PIONEER IN RADIO

The distiller last year became one of the first to use radio advertising (AA, July 21) and will continue to explore the medium, Mr. Perez said.

Ammirati Puris Lintas, New York, handles mainstream advertising for Bacardi.

Bacardi also plans to come up with more innovative print executions, such as a "French door" gatefold ad the marketer ran on the cover of Playboy's October 1997 issue (AA, Aug. 25).

The increased spending will also back an ad and public relations campaign later this year to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the drink mixing Bacardi rum and Coca-Cola, Mr. Perez said.

Bacardi is currently discussing plans with Coca-Cola Co.

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