Microbrews, it’s time to take on the Big Three
Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
29 April 2011
New Castle, technically an import, takes the first shot
Well, it’s about time. Technically, Newcastle Brown Ale is not a microbrew (it is technically an import, made by Heineken), but its recent announcement that it will launch its first-ever television campaign is the arrow shot over the bow in the beer market. Will any of the other microbrews follow suit?
Having worked on several beer brands, including some of the nation’s largest microbrews, believe me when I tell you that microbrews have rarely wanted to launch a mass media campaign.
“Many of them believed it was the act of discovery that made them (somewhat) popular and mass media marketing would subvert that.”
Now, they will have to.
There were several reasons why microbrews do not want to launch TV campaigns. For some, it is a simple money issue. But, for most, it is because they feel mass media marketing is beneath them, somehow. They believed their refusal to “sell out” is part of their appeal. Many of them believed it was the act of discovery that made them (somewhat) popular and mass media marketing would subvert that.
There was some factual basis for that. Microbrew drinkers are among the most disloyal brand customers because their brand face (who they are when the use the brand) is about finding the new thing. They will try what’s new. It’s the Bud, Miller and Coors drinkers who will only drink that one brand of beer.
The problem with the approach most microbrews have taken, however, is that microbrews end up competing against themselves, never taking market share from the big three.
At some point, someone had to step out. Samuel Adams has run TV spots (and it is considered not microbrew-y enough inside the industry because of it) and now Newcastle is saying that enough is enough.
One thing I promise is that the first microbrew (and I’m talking about the ones that are not owned by Budweiser, Miller and Coors) to step out on the front porch and get aggressive with marketing – assuming its message is right – will also be the first to start stealing market share.
That’s when Bud, Coors and Miller will finally get nervous.
RTW Retailwinds Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 14 November 2018 A company changes its name to RTW Retailwinds? The women’s apparel retailer, New York & Company, changes its name to RTW Retailwinds. And I think the new name sucks.Greg Scott, Chief...
Fake Facebook friends Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 13 November 2018 Fake Facebook friends, just like MySpace For a short while, I was becoming a Facebook junkie. Er, perhaps the word junkie is too intense. Rather, my use of the site had become routine in my...
Grocery brands Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 12 November 2018 Grocery brands and…yoga? I first thought it was all pretty stupid. Grocery brands trotting out yoga classes, on-site breweries and jazz pianists to attract customers. I mean, how desperate can you...