I think everyone can agree that, from a post millennium social and economic perspective, beer is a sexy subject. There’s just no other way to put it.
America has fallen in love with craft beer, and shows no signs of its thirst being quenched anytime soon. But even more so than the beer, people have fallen in love with the brewers themselves; many craft beer companies have started to shift the focus of advertising from the beer to the people behind the beer. Telling stories as it turns out, is a much more compelling way of selling beer than simply focusing on the beer itself. As an industry friend and colleague recently stated to me “brewing great beer is just table stakes now, you have to really WOW someone if your beer is ever going to stand out on the shelves or at events”. Telling stories about the people who brew your beer is actually a great way to get people excited about that brand, and keeps them coming back for more. But with breweries being opened at such a rapid pace, there’s going to be a lot of beer crowding shelves in the coming years and breweries are going to be fiercely competing for customers. As a result some breweries will fail, but I hope that most will succeed. Those that succeed will, in my opinion, have strong ties to their community, compelling stories, and most importantly, a passion bordering on obsession with brewing excellent tasting beer.
It’s not that the beer in and of itself is sexy, it’s what the beer represents that just seems so powerfully entrapping to those who thirst for it. That’s why the crowdsourcing approach taken by MobCraft and partially by the likes of Blue Moon Brewing Co. and Sam Adams for some of their beers has been wildly popular and only solidified their brand presence in retail stores. Attracting and keeping loyal beer drinkers is all about interacting with them in ways and on levels that keep them engaged. Large companies tend to neglect the fact that customers are still people. But the craft brewers have taken the opposite approach, they engage the customers in ways that keep them excited about the beer that they’re drinking. This is why the craft beer industry is only going to grow and it’s the secret to its long term endurance in the marketplace.