In 2019, Minnesota ranked 15th in the nation in terms of number of craft beer breweries with 196 operating. As craft brew enthusiasts, we only hope that number only increases. However, with the increasingly saturated market, breweries need to go beyond delicious malty beverages to get people pouring in.
Craft your marketing plan
Similar to restaurants and other establishments, marketing for breweries is unending and begins before the brewery opens with pre-launch excitement. Hosting community events and food trucks, announcing new beers, and creating consistent awareness of the brewery are all additional marketing tactics that bring customers through the door.
And, while that delicious malty beverage might be what keeps people coming back for more, breweries are doing a lot of work behind the scenes to keep up with their growing list of competitors. Their space, partnerships and communication are all vital for success.
Breweries need to create an environment that fosters communication and allows patrons to feel comfortable and welcome in the space. Garage doors and patios are often features of breweries and make the spaces feel open and inviting. Some breweries, like Headflyer, have foam on the bottom of tables and chairs to reduce white noise and allow conversations to stay at your table. Many allow dogs, so people don’t have to leave their furry friend at home. All these elements and more construct an atmosphere people want to come back to.
Another way breweries drive traffic is by partnering with local companies for events, sponsorships or passes for discounted beer. Here are a few of our favorite companies we’ve spotted at breweries:
- Sidewalk Dog: local guide to dog-friendly places, activities, events, and more
- GetKnit Events: the thread that knits the community and local businesses together with fun events
- Trivia Mafia: bar and brewery trivia operation based in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Genuine, authentic messaging with your community is the most successful method of gaining loyal patrons and repeat customers. Surly Brewing and Dangerous Man do this exceptionally well. Surly Gives A Damn is one program that has helped generate a cult following, through volunteering and being active in the community.
During these times of uncertainty, it sure helps to sit back and enjoy a beer. If you can do so in the company of a family member or friend (given proper social distancing) even better! It’s important to support your favorite local breweries—and whether or not you like beer, you still can! Many offer options including hard seltzers, gluten-free beer or non-alcoholic beverages and most even offer some local snacks for purchase or partner with a food truck to offer on-site eats.
Get out there and support some of our favorite breweries that market themselves well:
Find more information about our outing to a couple local North Loop breweries in 2019 here!