Lucky 7: Chocolate Festival Goodies

Every year, for the last seven, I’ve had the distinct pleasure to presenting beverage and chocolate pairing sessions at the venerable Oregon Chocolate Festival. With my hat off to the founder and brilliant colleague, Karolina, it was this year – the 7th anniversary for me – that just transpired, deliciously.

A few of the delicious DAGOBA chocolate we featured at the fest sessions.

As promised to my sold out Saturday session and my fabulous Sunday guests, here’s the menu we savored.

Openers, both sessions:

ScharffenBerger Unsweetened and Bittersweet chocolate squares

I hadn’t thought to offer this as a warm up to the pairing menu before; so this year, I did. Wow. What a way to welcome chocolate to the chops! These two in specific are quite astringent and eye-opening. They aren’t designed to be snackers – and they aren’t. It was enlightening to taste them with my guests, to reset and refresh what exactly bittersweet and unsweetened chocolates taste like, to keep their profile in mind when using them in cooking.

Main Menu Saturday:

Main Menu Sunday:

  • Harney & Sons Soho Flavored Black Tea paired with DAGBOA Lavender Blue chocolate (59% cocoa) and coconut slivers
  • Momokawa Organic Junmai Ginjo Sake paired with DAGOBA White Chocolate Raspberry Mint (0% cocoa) & DAGOBA Ginger Lime chocolate (37% cocoa)
  • Standing Stone Brewing Company Milk Chocolate Ale paired with DAGOBA Milk chocolate (37% cocoa)

It was the first year there was an alcohol free beverage in the mix. When I went to the DAGOBA showroom in Ashland to secure the chocolates, Jill (showroom manager + most excellent colleague) reminded me they carry plenty of chocolate AND other complementary goodies. As a tea drinker, I bought a tin of this tea, took it home, tried it and decided that it would be in the menu.

Is this a great (crazy) crew, or what!!??

What a fun surprise the final menu is for me, every year. I want to provide guests with unique flavor mixes and ideas. To that end, I believe I was successful.

The guests make the party – thanks to everyone who joined me. Apologies to the folks we turned away on Saturday (100 seats were full before we started!). Please come again next year – earlier, as well you can join us on Sundays. There are sometimes available seats then.

I’ll wrap with BIG THANKS to my venerable and unflagging chocolate partner, DAGOBA. From the first year where, 20 minutes before  my session I was combing the floor, asking people I’d never met before if they’d like me to feature their chocolate, they’ve generously given.

Enjoy tastings and pairings, mixing and matching as you and your taste buds find fun. Props to my crew who helped me taste in advance, helping the winners this year rise to the menu, letting the not-so-hot test pairings quietly disappear.

See you next year ~

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Helpful Media Is A Gift

With props to a few recent journalist colleagues, I want to write about Press & Media as it relates to business development today.

  1. Thanks to PlateOnline, specifically Editor Chandra Ram & Writer Liz Grossman, for slogging through some tech glitches to make it happen and putting forth this article, which I’m very happy with. Since the subject is never part of the final editing, I’m always extra grateful for accurate and well-constructed articles and video. This is one of them. It’ll be one I share often and generously, since I feel very well and accurately represented.
  2. Thanks to Jason Spencer, host of Restaurant-Radio for this very fun interview as part of his podcast series. He is a great sport, open-minded and fun – qualities that only encourage me to be more available to people like him. People who are not so entrenched in what they think as they interview; leaving room for growth and mind expanding ideas, even if they aren’t in agreement. Journalism isn’t about agreeing; it’s about accurate reporting and story telling.
  3. Thanks to Morgan Child for this well-written piece. I appreciate journalists who are willing to tackle potentially sticky subjects. To me, what I want to read holds a few characteristics: accuracy (or at least it feels a balanced and fact checked), well written (proper grammar and spelling isn’t to be taken fro granted!), and a sense of story and fun. It has to make me think in some way too, recreational and otherwise.
  4. Thanks to Tom Franke for starting the connection trail with Jason; Thanks to the CIA at St. Helena CA for providing the opportunity to meet Chandra at a previous event.

Life and business is always what you make it. Learning how to connect, learning which connections are wise and which ones you can let go are highly useful skills to develop.

You have to recognize early in any career and endeavor: when you talk with any media and press (voice, email, text, any platform), they ultimately decide what gets published. Be prepared to be on point, know what you’re going to talk about, regardless of what they ask you and keep bringing it home – all while expressing a genuine appreciation for their time and invitation. If you don’t want to be quoted – or mis-quoted – don’t share something that could be misconstrued.

I often ask the writer for the ability to review the article, where it concerns me, to make sure what I told them, what they recorded I told them, is accurate. I’m not interested in being their editor – I am interested in making sure what I shared got across properly. Many have been very agreeable to this, the ones who also strive for accuracy in their work.

One of the very first interviews I had for WEB was totally messed up; even though I even supplied a fact sheet to the ‘writer.’ I learned from that instance that not all press is good press by a long shot. It’s impossible to get out from under inaccuracies published since retractions and corrections don’t really help the original reader.

One of the fine journalists I’ve been fortunate enough to work with, at Umpqua Brew Fest.

I’d also encourage you to vet media before hand, to see what they’re after and if there’s a fit. I recently turned down and offer to be interviewed for yet another Women In Beer article. At this point of the game and life and the beer scene, I find those articles are counterproductive. They’re not highlighting the right things, in my mind. I called the writer who proposed it and told him what I was up for (to be interviewed for an article that simply highlights people, gender is incidental even if it were to be all women). I called the editor, who has been good to me over the years and with whom I’m friendly, and told her my perspective; and that if she wanted to push a new envelope, getting rid of featuring gender v talent and initiative, I’m in.

Can you imagine an article featuring men in beer? What would the uproar be? Male, by the way, isn’t default. So why not let default mean everyone? The extinction of sexism will happen with the proactive stance of making sure the focus is well balanced and include a variety of people, on the front end with thoughtfulness and intention. It always feels like a consolation prize: Oh you’re a woman in beer, isn’t that novel/unique/different. No, it’s not actually, women have always been involved in beer….I digress, though I think you can see my point.

Media and press isn’t an entitlement, it’s a gift. Treat it as such.

Choose it wisely too. Decide which relationships you want to foster, treat them well and the kindness – and business boost – will usually be reciprocated.

Thanks to the above, and many many more over the years, for their gift of opportunity. My YouTube channel has some more examples; my TED talk is a zenith example.

I’m ready for more. Who’s in need of a lively and educational article right now? Get in touch.

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Life Through The Beer Lens

What is life like with beer in it?

Said another way, how do we look at life if we are looking with a beer lens?

Beer is truly global. If we were to take an earnest look at what and how beer impacts life, we could see several opportunities. Here’s a short list.

  1. How can we improve equality, equity and societies with the beer lens? Branding, images and language would be the first arena to tackle: a comprehensive review of all names and labels would be a very productive place to start. Keep the good stuff, ditch with the bad stuff and move onward and forward together.
  2. By only using helpful and positive language and images, by changing up questionable graphics and words, by we immediately raise the bar for everyone. It’s also great business: respect resonates with everyone.
  3. By shifting our outlook and attitude, even slightly to recognize what is good for all through this minimal and very doable change, would be a big impact all on its own. And for the record: ensuring everyone is invited with smart language and graphics isn’t neutering or even loosing your brand personality – it’s an enhancement of brand when done thoughtfully.

How do you look at life with a beer lens?

The beer lens is an interesting one. Many people who are into beer are fanatics, enthusiasts, geeks, nerds – whatever you want to use. Yes, those are labels – though most seem to proudly sport the title as such to meet and cohort with other beer lovers of the same passion level. It’s usually fun to see since there’s a lot of happy surrounding getting together with others ala beer.

Most people know something about beer. In my research into beer and people (specifically women, though observationally men too) darn near everyone has some level of recognition of beer, however new they are, however experienced they may be. It’s a common idea which we all seems to have our own definition thereof.

I find when people engage in beer, where ever they are literally and figuratively, they seem to come together. we find the common ground, for the good of the whole, which absolutely moves us forward. And in that realm, the beer lens can be used constructively for us all.

Frankly, if brands want to insult and use stupid names, they don’t deserve the bandwidth and attention of any potential customers. I’d question why they were in the business at all. That’s not business – that selective ignorance and blatant stupidity.

Review your brands, language and images regularly. I’d recommend a quarterly review, involving varied staff and customers alike. They both have powerful, useful input brands should be listening to. This can help ensure the invitation to engage for your ideal clients; never turning off or insulting any audience. You can still be you, you can still be strongly and unapologetically your brand in doing so.

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Consumer Insight On Beer

What if you knew exactly what your customers thought about your beer, really and truly knew?

What could that do for your business?

consumer insight is key to knowing your ideal client

Maybe you think you know now…if so, tell me: where do you garner that specific data (aka insight)? Do you have real conversations in person to ask them questions? Do you buy data that supposedly tells you what they think? How do you come by this information?

What do you then do with the information you have? How do you apply it? What do you use it for? How is it a useful tool for you? And when does it get put on the shelf and ‘away’, for another time?

What if you had regular real-time live in-person conversations with your ideal clients? Not just your average customer – not the one the statistical data tells you they are; the ideal one – the real flesh and blood person who buys and drinks your beer? What would that look like?

This insight comes from market research. Market research is only as intensive and expensive, surficial and inexpensive as you want it to be.

To the raging misnomer of market research being expensive I’d reply: it’s going to be waaaaaaay more expensive to NOT know, than it is to know. And it’s pretty damn economical – big ROI – when you do it right, no matter the dollar price. Simple, straight forward, regular.

We’re talking ling term business success.

When you want to know how to best reach your customers, talk to them. Open ended questions to every day drinkers (aka ideal clients) of your beer will yield rich insight you can’t get anywhere else.

When you want to know more tactics on how to talk with your customers to garner the most useful insight, feel free to be in touch. I help beer focused companies do just that: know their customers.

Consumer insight on beer is necessary to survive and thrive. In a market place continually flooding with more choices, it’s tantamount to staying in business. The great news: it’s not hard nor need it be expensive. Just know you need to do it. 

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Hello, My Name Is Beer

If you were a beer, what kind of beer would you be?

While it may seem like a silly question, think about it from a customer perspective.

When you ask people – customers – what’s your favorite beer, you’re creating a boundary of thinking. You’ve asked them to name the specific limit of what favorite is to them. And you’ve done it with perhaps no context.

If you ask someone to tell you their favorite beer, you’ve asked them to make an absolute choice. That’s not the right tack to building both stronger ties with ideal clients and with future customers.

What if you approached it like this:

If you were a beer ingredient, what would you be? Where do you come from? Why and when are you utilized in the brew? What flavors do you impart and when? What do you enjoy about being part of a beer? What food do you like hanging out with? When do you like to pour on your flavor? When would you prefer to not show up? How do you like to be appreciated?

Open the border of what beer is and can be. Set it free from the constraints of ‘favorite.’ In my book I take the industry to task for using ‘favorite’. It’s so limiting.

If you were a beer and you were only mentioned as a favorite, how would you feel? Limited? Exclusive? Special? Caged?

If I were a beer, I’d be a go-to, a well-made balanced crowd and taste bud pleaser. One that many people smile upon hearing my name or tasting my flavor.

In every instance, everyone in the industry needs to be open-minded to beer, overall for the continued success of what the beverage is to humanity. Placing limits on beer is a dead-end.

So – let me ask you again: If you were a beer, what would you be?

p.s. you can remake the sentence to fit you, not simply to fit what someone else asks you to be.

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What Do You Want To Know About Beer Marketing?

Go ahead – ask me about marketing beer.

Here’s your opportunity.

Anyone in the professional beer crowd who has a question on marketing, ask me today – right now. Either use the comments below or send me an email at ginger@womenenjoyingbeer.com

I’ll reply to everyone, publicly so we can all benefit.

Now’s your chance. 100% open, complementary expertise and advice on marketing beer.

Go for it.

g

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Most Beer Labels Suck

When we go to our fridge to choose a beer for our evening’s enjoyment, there’s always a moment of pause as we read the label.

Almost all beer labels are miserably lacking in flavor descriptive words about that beer.

Why is that?

What could these labels share to entice via flavor words (caveat: color isn’t flavor)?

There’s no good reason. It needs to change.

Beer needs to be described by its flavors; not by the strain of hops or the how it was made or how much the brand loves their own beer. Good grief.

Beer companies need to describe the beer by its flavors and in plain language. Esoteric words are usually unhelpful, since what you should try to do with the precious label space is to entice and invite the customer based on the attractive flavor words printed.

Beer labels can do way better.

Simple easy tweaks of including flavor words, getting rid of the unhelpful other words that can be on your website instead, will in fact get more people trying and returning to beer brands.

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What You Can Do Today

The world’s first and only book on how to market beer to women is now available – How To Market Beer To Women, Don’t Sell Me A Pink Hammer.

One of my favorite parts of the book is the chapter wrap-up, the What You Can Do Today section. I designed this section to be the workbook portion – the action, Ms. Jackson – in each chapter. The What You Can Do Today section offers 5 specific actions you can take for each chapters’ specific insight.

Responding to customer curiosity builds brands

For example, Chapter 4 is Convincing Reasons To Try A New Beer. One of the five WYCTD tactics is Play to her sense of curiosity. Humans are obviously curious beings. We are always seeking new and different in life. Curiosity therefore is a goldmine for beer companies, and all companies really, to tap into.

  • What is she curious about, about beer? How can you answer her questions, diplomatically and educationally and enthusiastically?
  • What can you share with her about your beer that she doesn’t already know? What isn’t on the website, your online channels and in the heads of your team that you can share with her through these various marketing opportunities that will keep her interested and hungry for more knowledge?
  • When have you asked your female beer drinkers and buyers what they want to know about your brand?

Curiosity is powerful. It’s a powerful ally to building better marketing. Marketing is communication and when you go right to the source – right to your ideal client to ask her why she participates in your brand at all (or doesn’t) – you tap into your own curiosity so you can better satisfy hers.

Curiosity is good and necessary for strong marketing endeavors. To have more questions than answers is best. It indicates a continual thirst for knowing more, for you first to serve your customers; for your customers next so they keep coming back for more.

The book is available here; we ship all over the globe. Watch for an audio recording to be available soon as well.

What you can do today is to get the book to help strengthen and amp your overall marketing efforts. Your beer drinkers and buyers are ready, curious and waiting.

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Emotional Attachment of Beer

How are you attached to beer? I can put it this way instead: what is it about beer that attracts you?

The emotional factors of any good and service are what initially get us involved. If we choose to stay involved, our emotional attachment has begun to develop. What’s the next level, after initial introduction?

Women of all ages have an emotional attachment to beer.

In studying women and beer (qualitative data research) I can tell you there are as many reasons that women get involved in beer as there are women. And I can tell you that there are clear patterns and habits, trends and paths that are common among women and their engagement with beer. That’s good news for beer focused companies.

Are you one of those companies?

If you are, you likely want to know what your customers think about your beer and your brand, no matter what space you hold in the whole beer schema.

If you don’t know or you don’t think you care – your beer will sell itself – stop reading now and go burn your money. I can’t help you.

If you do care, then I can help you more than you can surmise. And it’s not because I think I know it all.

What I do know is this: Women Enjoy Beer. All sorts of women enjoy all sorts of beer. I help dedicated people in beer oriented companies know why women either do or don’t drink or buy (or both) beer. No one else has taken the time or made the deep dive into the asking of open ended questions to hear and record their replies, like Women Enjoying Beer has.

No one.

We know way more than any other resource out there who states they know women and beer. It’s qualitative data – it’s voluminous, messy and it’s rare any sort of company (beer or data) wants to dig into it, though it’s THE best data you can get hands down. Scan (quantitative data) will never tell the full story. So why do so many beer companies buy and reply on that data? It doesn’t divulge the why, which is the absolute key to knowing what your customer wants from your beer.

I personally have come to love this data – this rabbit-hole style input that can go anywhere; it doesn’t fit a mold – it simply reflects what our customers think, do and how they make decisions. It’s gorgeous and incredibly usefully fascinating for the right people who are willing tot wander through the weeds of this data to get to the gold. And gold there is. Qualitative data is a gold rush of insight; quantitative is the leftover denuded landscape from mining scan data.

General reports and extrapolated documents won’t have the depth of use and long-range collected insight like we have. I can tell you exactly what the emotional attachments and detachments are for women and beer.

Emotional attachment is not a sex oriented concern either. Women don’t get all ga-ga over beer any more or less than men do. Women aren’t any more detached from beer than men are. The crux of the deal is this: Beer is for everyone. Our data confirms this over and over again. Our services educate you on how to really maximize the insight clients get access to when we work together.

Beer isn’t for every women. Nor is beer for every man. It’s for the people who want to engage. The emotional attachment is a specific area of research data we have recorded. It’s rich, deep and extremely useful in the right hands and minds. Call us if you are one of those companies.

How are you emotionally attached to you beer?

How are you emotionally attached to your customers?

Buy the book here.

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What Do You Believe About Beer?

What do you believe about beer?

Having conducted research for 8+ years on female beer drinkers and buyers, I’ve come to a few conclusions.

An open mind is the best palate there is. Period.

Beer is for everyone who wants to partake.

You don’t have to drink beer to enjoy beer.

Beer is about flavor.

Beer is about community.

Beer is about conversation.

Pro Brewer, Larry Chase (c) surrounded by enthusiastic beer fans

Never trust a fat brewer.

Beer and food enjoyed together is a magic combination.

Drinking in moderation is always best, for flavor.

Getting drunk is not ever the goal.

Research on women and beer is fascinating.

The research I’ve gathered on women’s relationship with beer can change the world for the better, working with the right clients. 

There are really interesting people involved in beer, the world over.

Women have always been involved in beer.

There are a tun of unhelpful, damaging stereotypes and incorrect myths to bust around women and beer.

Beer brings people together.

 Flavor is where you find it.

Drink what you like, support what your friends drink too.

What beer you drink is irrelevant to the biggest picture. Camaraderie is relevant.

Beer has an oddly inherited fun factor to it.

Being a diplomat will always be better than being a snob.

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What Do You See In Beer Magazines?

More accurately, what don’t you see?

Nudged by an unexpected and thought-provoking conversation earlier this year, I was moved to do what the caller suggested: taking a count of images of women and men in beer publications to point out the sex disparity.

We have a few beer magazines in our home so I got the pile and started counting.

Even I was surprised.

Here’s the yield of this sampling:

Female                       Male

All About Beer

March 2017                           21                               55

January 2017                        19                               50

Beer Advocate

#113                                       6                                  20

#118*                                     15                               23                        *Female STEM article

#120                                       9                                  54

Brewer

May/June 2016                    12                               41

Nov/Dec 2016                       6                                  29

Craft Beer & Brewing

Oct/Nov 2015                       9                                  46

Feb/March 2016                  7                                  40

April/May 2016                    5                                  57

The New Brewer

July/Aug 2016                        34                               167

Nov/Dec 2016                         20                               93

Jan/Feb 2017                           18                               78

Zymurgy

March/April 2016                   12                               48

July/Aug 2016                          8                                  36

Nov/Dec 2016                           18                               67

I sent a letter to the editors and publishers of these publications with these findings, in an educational fashion pointing out: “Note: This isn’t an attack – rather highlighting a fact you’ve created which we can change for the better.”

It’s not an attack; it’s an enlightenment, a helpful count to assist those in a position to change things for the better today to see what they are really putting forth.

Do I have an ax to grind? Not with the editors and publishers. Indeed, I count the ones I know as friends and colleagues, have even written for some of them. With beer overall, perhaps. A mystifying grind as it were. People throughout the industry, women and men alike, say they are all for equality and then accept sexism in all sorts of ways related to beer. It’s totally disconnected and assumes that no, they don’t all get it. Not by a long shot. And they must to survive and grow.

I did this with respect. Mostly to help grow the full respect for and of women. And with the intent that this will help them see, literally, the positive (and negative) impacts of being blind to what is really unfolding in front of our very eyes. It’s a situation all of them can change – today if they really want to make beer welcome everyone.

What, if anything, did I hear in reply?

Exactly one response; a phone call from the founder and publisher of Brewer Magazine. It was a positive and enjoyable call, a first contact with this person. They expressed their concern. So far nothing else has happened.

So does beer really care about females and including them equitably in the images and articles of the everyday magazines in the trade and on the stands? These numbers can lead you to your own conclusion. I say it doesn’t. If we don’t see it, we don’t believe it.

Why did I do this?

I focus on the Why (qualitative, psycho graphic – reasons to our decision making factors) and I wanted to see what exactly the numbers were; to communicate that the research I’ve conducted for 8 years does in fact show in data (insight) what the pages did in pictures.

Women Enjoying Beer exists to enlighten those in the beer world who see value in knowing what the most powerful beer buyer and drinker does and thinks. We’re the only firm on the globe holding this precious and useful information. It’s researched procured data that tells the full story, something that statistics and scan data can never do. Why Women Buy Beer. For the right company, what we offer is life & business changing for the better.

If you are one of the right people, I can help you significantly grow your business.

FYI: Licensed Data is now for sale to qualified clients. Call me to discuss. 515.450.7757 PST

*

Counts include all relatively easily discernible images, overtly female and male, photographs and illustrations, ads, articles, editorials.

Includes advertisers illustrations and art, since you can control what you accept and decline.

Crowd shots factored in depending on how easily gender of people in shots can be quickly determined.

If you count and have slightly different numbers, the point is still the same.

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April Book Offer With Bonuses

The book you need.

Do you agree that beer is for every body?

In homage to spring being a time of renewal and limitless possibilities, how about a goodie to jump-start us to progress?? I’ve got a limited number of books earmarked for this special – once they’re gone, they’re gone!

Here’s my offer to you today:

Buy your own copy of the book, How To Market Beer To Women, Don’t Sell Me A Pink Hammer this week (through Friday 4/14/17) and I’ll give you two Bonuses:

  • Bonus #1: Complementary 15 minute phone call consult on how to best use the book, good through May 15, 2017
  • Bonus #2: Complementary document, Yes! and No!: The Do’s & Don’ts of Marketing Beer To Women for you to utilize and improve your business, better reaching more possible beer friendly taste buds and eager beer brains.

Offer good ONLY THIS WEEK!!

Order now.

Once you’ve ordered your book, we’ll schedule your bonus consult and I’ll send you the Yes & No bonus resource so you can put it to immediate use.

The book is the only one of its kind: a guidebook to increase and improve the beer community, to the benefit of all. 

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Crafting A Community

Creating a community involves many facets of consideration. One of them being language and terminology.

One word the beer world uses is ‘craft’ – and I think it’s hamstringing those who use it. Here’s why.

Classic example: Having recently presented at the Nightclub & Bar Show, Las Vegas Nevada, I was paging through the program. Looking for who else I knew presenting, interesting topics to read up on, and making sure I had my info straight pre-talk. I did see a few familiar names (always fun) and new topics to investigate (good for the brain) and my info was straight.

What I also noticed was the page on their Craft Brew Pavilion. Here’s what I find odd.

  1. The Brewers Association has self-determinedly put forth their definition of what a craft brewer is, not what a craft beer is (they try to be very direct about this differentiation).
  2. The industry of ‘craft beer’ has embraced this delineation. I appreciate having guidelines and parameters in some areas of life (like when I’m driving), yet beer is for everyone – and the term ‘craft’ really has nothing to do with the consumer; everything to do with going to market and production considerations for brewers. Yes, some consumers want it yet all brands should be founded on their own merits to begin with, not relying on one word to make or break (that’d be foolishly shortsighted).
  3. The word craft is like the word Natural was in the 1970’s – at first it had some legitimacy; then everyone started using it thinking that consumers would flock to the products that advertised as much, however true or untrue the claims. And there was and still is (to my knowledge) a set global agreed upon by multiple bodies definition of the word. So why use it?
  4. If your beers are well-crafted, then use that in your marketing.
  5. I guarantee you that from my own data backed qualitative research the word ‘craft’ isn’t as relevant as the makers would want it or think it to be. Most consumers simply want products and goods they enjoy and can buy and share.
  6. The list of Companies in the NCB Craft Brew Pavilion wasn’t following the letter of the BA definition (which seems to be what most people go by – so is it moot to begin with?). They included: Black Tooth Brewing Company, Bootleggers Brewery, Boston Beer Company, Breckenridge Brewery, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Duval Moortgat, garage Brewing Co., Green Flash Brewing, Lagunitas Brewing Company, Odell Brewing Company, Pear Up, Squatters Craft Beers & Wasatch Brewery, The Dudes’ Brewing Company, Wild Tonic.
  • Are all of these actually brewed, first of all? Is tonic brewed?
  • What’s the technical definition of ‘brewing’?
  • Are all of these fitting to the limited definition of a craft-brewer? (no)
  • Who’s putting this list together and are they trying to get traction or simply inaccurately lumping vendors they could get signed on together?

How about a simple Beverage Pavilion for accuracy sake?

Accuracy is critical. If you’re going to do something, do it well and accurately. Seeing this list pokes holes in the idea that ‘craft’ is special. Most beer enthusiasts I know would be able to take a look at the list and tell me which companies in the line up don’t fit the aforementioned definition.

And really, who cares.

Call this area a Beverage Pavilion – by all means and for all vendors and visitors, that’d be accurate. To call it otherwise is inaccurate, a falsity that only perpetuates misinformation. Who’s to tell me – as a consumer – what is craft and what isn’t? We make our decisions on the moment we make them, with the immediate influencing factors already in place.

As a marketer it pains me to see any entity publish inaccuracies, especially in a very specific arena like this.

Marketing isn’t solely around to drive sales. Marketing is communication. And the world deserves and wants accuracy and transparency. Nothing chaps my youknowwhat more than marketers getting unjustly blamed for shenanigans others may have instigated and perpetuated. When you notice that info is wrong, speak up. Legitimate hard working marketers will appreciate the catch. At a minimum, a lively conversation will build bridges and new connections.

What’s craft? That’s up to each and everyone of us, our own definitions will work just fine. For the industry, it’s another story. Fine – use it in industry. But don’t mess with everyone else.

Well crafted products, owned by any entity and in any category, of any size volume, suits me fine.

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What Does Your Beer Taste Like?

“This beer tastes like ____.”

If that phrase has ever come out of your mouth, then it’s a good day to rethink letting it trickle out of your lips. We can all get smarter, quickly to get more out of our beer adventures.

What should that beer taste like? Itself, perhaps??

Let’s begin again:

  1. What does the reference beer taste like? What flavor, aroma and texture words can you expressly use to define it?
  2. What does the current beer taste like? What flavor, aroma and texture words can you expressly use to define it?

My beer did not taste like Zachary’s…

Do you go to an Irish pub, order the burger and say, “This tastes like McDonald’s?” I’ll bet you a beer that you don’t. Maybe because it doesn’t – and maybe because it does. Either way, they are entirely different experiences. Proprietors of all goods and services strive very hard to make their specific offerings to us singular to their brand, and therefore unlike any other business.

Can you imagine beer judges saying, “Well, this beer sure tastes a lot like the last one we tried. It must be the same.”

Indeed, I’d posit a guess that this is one very specific reason why the following quote is true.

“The chief business of the American people is business.” – C Coolidge.

Today’s an ideal day to begin getting specific; specific is terrific. Specificity helps you identify the beer and food you like, steer clear of those you don’t care for, and it also helps the makers – brewers included – help direct you to what they believe you’ll enjoy too based on what you can specify.

The next time you’re tempted to compare one beer to another, perhaps even with similar attributes and flavors, pause – get specific and continue. To each beer, its own description.

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