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April 29, 2009 / jasonpinto

Beer-Battered Marketing

Beer. When it comes to marketing, companies that produce beer seemingly have it pretty easy. They have a product that a lot of people enjoy. However, competition is fierce! And, because there have been so many successful advertisements put out by those companies over the years, the bar has been raised quite high.

I’ve recently become familiar with a brewing company that is located in Massachusetts. It is the Wachusset Brewing Company. You can check out their website here:

They make really good beer. They also do a few very good things when it comes to their marketing efforts.

Subtle Touch of Promotion:
One of the items they produce is a Wachusett pint glass. Pint glasses usually last for a long time, and people often use them when friends are over the house. So, what did they put on the real estate of the glass? On one side of the glass is their logo.  But on the other side, they simply say this: “Enjoy with Friends”.

Imagine that… They could have used that part of the glass to brag about themselves. Maybe they could have said “Best Beer in Mass!”, “The Beer for  You”, “Better Tasting than Sams!”, or something like that. There may not have been anything wrong with those phrases… maybe they are true. However, saying something like that could potentially seem annoying, as it is purely self-promotional.

Instead, the phrase “Enjoy with Friends” does two very good things: It subtly encourages the person to use the glass when friends are over; also, it helps them associate that company (Wachuset Brewing) with good times.

New Product Launch:
I may be wrong about this, but I believe they are looking at introducing a new beer. I believe it’s named RYDE. It seems to have quite a different label than their other brews. But, they are packaging a few of these in their “Wachusett Sampler Packs”. I think that’s a great idea. People are familiar with the other brews, and a sampler pack is certainly something they may pick up during their next trip to the package store. Well, rather than hope that people “dive in” and try a 12-pack of the new stuff, they are gently introducing (and possibly testing the success of) this new product.

The Open House Approach:
Four days a week, they provide free tours of their brewery. Yep, free! During the tour, they also let you sample a couple of their beers. No doubt, it costs them money to have someone lead the tour, and for them to provide the samples. However, I promise, by the time you finish the tour, you will want to buy something from their gift shop. It might be a pint glass, a growler, or a t-shirt.

When it comes to your marketing efforts, the Wachusett Brewing Company certainly can provide some inspiration.

Maybe you have a great facility… An open house is always an option. Or maybe you simply work at an office… Well, is it time to throw a little luncheon, or host a tweet-up?

Or before you go publish the next “awesome feature” that your product or service can do, might there be a way for you to say it with a little less “promotion” in your voice? Or before you launch a major change to your product or service on your customer base, is there a way to introduce it in a way that doesn’t cause widespread panic and angst?

Thank you, Wachusett Brewing Company, for a great product and even better marketing strategies.


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