Driving Beer Marketing Home

The last time you were on a highway, street or other road, what did you notice? Did you see any vehicles with branding on them – signs to indicate a business or entity on the vehicle? What kinds of vehicles do you notice have any sort of branding?

Farmer friend, Jennie, Butcher Creek Farms, and Ginger before the Home Free Tour 2009

Farmer friend, Jennie, Butcher Creek Farms, and Ginger before the Home Free Tour 2009

When I first started Women Enjoying Beer, I immediately got magnetic brand signs – here’s a photo with the first set, shortly before setting out on our Home-Free Tour, 2009.

They traveling 15,000+ miles across the country with success, no loss or theft or magnets blowing off. We got countless thumbs ups, vehicles passing us and the passengers taking pictures of the logo, windows rolled down at stop signs and traffic lights and quick conversations. Suffice it to say: vehicle branding is one of thee most effective tools you can use and add to your brand development.

Here’s an article worth a read on Brand Development Models.

Once we landed, ironically enough, the first magnet went missing – I was torn: “Wow! Someone likes the logo enough to want it.” And “Stealing’s bad, no matter.” (So if you see any of 3 various large WEB logo magnets, grab it and return it – they were stolen and I would like them back).

Ironic because here we traveled allll across the country with no incident – including parking in urban San Diego overnights with no disappearance.

After the 3rd magnetic sticker was stolen I found the solution: Decals. A’shopping I went and with success! Lo and behold the professionally created and applied brand decals have been an excellent choice for WEB brand presence, opening conversations and brand development. There’s no doubt in my mind its been some of the very best dollars I’ve spent anywhere in the company, for any purpose.

Hard working car & logos - always on the job.

Hard working car & logos – always on the job.

Seeing is believing. Seeing is engaging. Seeing your brand image and logo will have a farther reach than you can surmise. While you may not know who exactly is seeing the images, you do know they are being seen. Usually to happily unexpected people who are in fact curious and will engage with you and your brand.

Here are a few tips I want to share to increase the decal impact:

1. When driving on freeways and highways, don’t speed. Drive a reasonable pace and let traffic pass you if it’s multi lane. People will pass, they’ll slow to get a picture and give a smile. You want people reading the images so a slightly slower speed will give them the chance to do so.

2. Drive smart and carefully. You’re a brand rep now, not some anonymous driver. If you use courtesy in a branded vehicle, it’s noted and an indirect positive impression of the brand. If you cut people off and don’t use your blinkers, your brand suffers blows due to your carelessness.

3. Logos makes vehicles more notable. Said another way, I’m very aware the words “Women Enjoying Beer” are on my vehicles, prominently displayed and that all varieties of police and other paramilitary folk see it and may be curious or suspicious of what’s inside. Giving beer a good name by driving carefully is a subliminal message we can communicate.

4. Be SURE to put a decal on your rear end. When people are stopped in traffic, parking and driving, they generally see the rear of the vehicle first. Prime real estate for a brand message! I quickly lost count of how many people I see in my rear view mirror who point or take a picture of the decal I’ve got on my trunk. Yes, use the sides – and know that static traffic can’t and doesn’t read your signage right then and there.

5. I’ve got brand stickers on my bicycle too – use every mode as opportunity. My bike ONLY has my logo, so there’s not a clutter the looker has to wade through to see what I want them to see.

Have fun developing your brand. When you’re ready to hire a marketing specialist for ideas like these to increase your sales and develop creative ways to communicate your brand and message, call us.

A little strategy coupled with fun equals success. Drive on.

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What’s In A Label

What’s on or on the label speaks to what’s inside the container.

Like it or not, it’s true. All of us as consumers first notice and act on the labeling of a product. Internet search “impact of effective labeling” and you’ll get a raft of things to read to reinforce this truism.

Like it or not again: actively or subtly, all labels and images are branding your products and services. Some people don’t like that concept, some embrace it. Consumers are absorbing it all so be clear on who you are , what your brand is about and how the images you choose to connect to your brand are based on sounds and forethought information that can help you succeed.

So what does that mean for beer companies?

1. Know that no matter what you think about what’s inside that keg, can or bottle, what matters most is the impression you make on the end consumer. Clever, cute, inside joke type labels will only go so far. Far enough to get you noticed, yet not far enough for strong consistent return patronage, which is what will help your company either succeed or fail.

2. Know that the consumer is the one that will be buying your product, no matter how cool, innovative or unusual it is. They’re the ones paying your bills, overhead and wages. You must know your target market and ensure they can indeed support your endeavors. If not, you need to replan the plan.

3. Know that labels and images matter. They matter more than many companies ever realize or take the time to find out. Market research is an invaluable tool for bringing products and services to market. And that’s the essence of being successful: bringing the product you’re offering to the market you want to buy it.

Know these things to be true. And act on that knowledge to help guide you to success, not ignorant or arrogant failure. Both success and failure draw in and affect way more people than just yourself.

Wouldn’t you rather plan for success than failure? If so, do your homework. Or the research as the case may be.

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Marketing Beer to Women, Part 7: Marketing to Drive Female Traffic

Do you know how to drive the right traffic to your brand? Of course the first key it to know your market. Once you know that, then you can use that marketing savvy to drive females to your brands and business.

Here is more research based insight for you to use.

Marketing to drive female traffic

  • Greet every single woman who walks through your door. Make them feel welcome every time. A local place I patronize does not have a regular host or someone dedicated to greeting. This is a small investment for huge returns; said another way, if you’re not welcoming, why should they come in?
  • Make sure your language and wording is gender inclusive & female friendly. ‘Guys’ directed at women, while perhaps common vernacular, it’s still inaccurate no matter how common and will set you off on the wrong foot with many women. Do you call a table of men ‘ladies’? Be a change agent instead of a perpetrator.

  • These are women, not guys. Photo by Kate Parks

    When in doubt, don’t use any gender identifiers in greeting women and men. Try “Folks” or simply leave off any s/he oriented words all together you don’t need them (and don’t be lazy about it either).

  • No ‘Ladies Night’ events. Period. Ever. Think: men coming to hit on the women which is exactly what women DON’T want when they are out to enjoy beer. Yes, have women’s only events, just remove the skanky 70’s/80’s creepy guys trolling for women feel that many women know they will encounter (even if you don’t think so – it’s their opinions that matter here). Plus it’s a tired and outdated concept. A small amount of creative effort will get you past this.
  • [FYI- would you host a ‘Men’s’ night’?  No – so don’t perpetuate this double standard.]
  • Find out convenient times for women to enjoy beer at your establishment and cater to those times.
  • No pinkification UNLESS it’s authentically related to 1. Breast Cancer 2. Barbie (underage – RED FLAG) 3. Victoria’s Secret 4. It’s your brand color
  • Make sure graphics are not chauvinistic; for sake of educating yourself, look at these definitions of feminism and chauvinism. They are vastly different.

Knowing your market allows you to properly drive female traffic to your brands. Do the market research yourself or call on WEB to help you. It’s highly enlightening and can be immediately applied.

Marketing Beer to Women Series starts here

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Peace-ful Bottle Design

Creative bottle design

Here’s a great example of an innovative design that will catch lots of new eyes.

It’s from Peace Tree Brewing out of Knoxville Iowa. Megan and her crew have gone into the brewing business with much thought and business sense. And it’s downright solid tasty beer. A credit to the craft brewing community.

Why is this an innovative design?

1. Is anyone else doing a 12 ounce ‘stubby’ design? It stands out in the see of craft beer, and beer overall. Yes, Full Sail’s Session is a stubby, weighing in at 11 ounces. On this case with a 12 ounce bottle, you can apples-to-apples compare the quantities of other bottles; smart math for everyone, especially consumers.

2. The labeling is right on – it’s fun, attractive and nicely colored. And it fits on the shorter shelves in my fridge.

How could it improve?

1. They have several beer styles and the labels are disconnected. Meaning this label is vastly different than the others; no brand continuity which in turn will make it hard for the consumer to draw one style of this brand to another that doesn’t look at all like it (with the exception of the bottle itself).

2. Like almost all bottled and canned beer out there, there is no consumer oriented descriptions of the beer. Yes, it talks about hops and such – no “this goes well with…”, or everyday flavors descriptions. Beer does not necessarily have flavors that are found in other common drink and food stuffs so to use everyday words is important. No, it isn’t dumbing it down. It’s bringing more people into the fold of understanding and educating consumers what beer flavors taste like.

Another great thing about this brand is that they saw the branding light and didn’t name it for a local river which had a sex oriented notation (even though the name works for the river). Although not many knew about this because they changed it before it opened, the fact they did in fact change it was wise.

Well done, Peace Tree. Keep on brewing!

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