In order for consumers to spend money on leisure activities, their personal financial circumstances have to provide them with disposable income for non-essential expenditure. The increased confidence and disposable income that UK consumers experienced at the beginning of 2016 contributed to 95% of consumers spending money on leisure activities in Q1 of that year, of whom two-thirds spent money drinking in pubs and bars. However, despite the increased demand for leisure activities, the number of nightclubs has almost halved in the last decade.

What are consumers looking for in the leisure and nightlife industry?

20 years ago the nightclub scene was thriving, however between 2005 and 2015 the number of nightclubs almost halved from 3,144 in 2005 to 1,733 in 2015 (Association of Licensed MultipleRetailers (ALMR)). This has been accompanied by a rapid decline in the number of pubs over the last30 years. In 1982 there were 67,800 pubs in the UK, however by 2015 this number had decreased to50,800, which is the lowest number of pubs in the UK for more than half a century. However, UK consumers are still spending their money on nightlife and leisure activities, so where is this money going?

Anna Tolley, AB InBev Legal and Corporate Affairs Director for North Europe says,
“To understand changing consumer tastes brands need to appreciate that the day and night time economy in 2017 has moved far beyond traditional ‘consumption settings’”

Anna commented on the nightlife industry saying,
“We have seen an increase in the number of consumers craving a ‘unique’ experience and wanting to be part of something different. So for us, the challenge is around how we carefully pair our premium products, with relevant and unique experiences that meet our consumers’ needs.”

The demand for a new and different nightlife experience is increasing, and as consumer confidence continues to grow in the UK it is vital that corporations within the nightlife and leisure industries adapt and consider their offering to align with consumer demand.

What are consumers looking for?

The most recent Annual VIBE Beverage Consumer Trend Survey identified that the top types of restaurant and bars visited most frequently within the UK are casual dining chains, local bars and fine dining and independent casual dining establishments. Males tend to frequent local neighbourhood bars, fine dining and casinos whereas women favour casual dining chains, independent establishments and nightclubs.

Clubs and bars are vital to the UK economy, as highlighted by the Forward into the Night report produced by the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA). This states that night-time businesses employ 1.3m people and generate 6% of the UK’s gross domestic product. This demonstrates that there is still high demand for the nightlife and leisure industry within the UK, despite the decline in traditional nightclubs and pubs.

How Miles Smith can help you

It is vital that you understand the changing climate your client is operating in and are able to adapt to their requirements and provide tailored insurance solutions to meet their needs. Miles Smith London Market Broking provides insurance schemes which cater for the evolving and developing nightlife and leisure industries.


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