If there’s one thing I’ve noticed from 10 years of making beer, it’s that many homebrewers have a love for differentiation and innovation. These values come in handy during my daily work at A-LINE with our client family.
Lessons learned from homebrewers on branding, naming and storytelling can reinforce your organization’s own marketing efforts and ignite new ideas for you and your team.
Early on, my husband (and brewing partner) Brian and I felt compelled to name our brewing operation and each of our beers. We even threw parties to celebrate and share our beer with friends. Around that time, Brian had also started the blog, Untamed Beer, so the name and its credo, “beer in its natural state, not tamed, domesticated or cultivated,” flowed into our beer concepts and reputation within the homebrewing community.
Whether it’s being an egotist or a visionary, identifying and communicating a definite point of view is memorable, sellable and scalable.
For your company, is its name itself memorable? Is it well-branded with a unique, professionally-designed logo? Does it garner respect, and better yet, love? Are you telling a story worth sharing—one that spreads from one happy client or colleague to the next?
At the first homebrew club meeting I attended about 8 years ago, we learned we weren’t alone in this branding thing. There were home breweries like “Bottle Tree” and “Fightin’ Monkey.” Members were known by the monikers of “Brewboy” and “Stardust.” Personas were so strong and compelling that often years would go by without knowing people’s real names.
Often, homebrewers’ beers have names, packaging, and stories behind then. Our friends’ “Überbeer” has an elegantly designed label and is dipped in wax. [The story of Überbeer is best enjoyed privately over an Überbeer, not digitally.] Our own accidentally-overly-lactosed milk stout was affectionately dubbed, “Troll’s Blood.” These names and their stories, though, become a vital part of a brand’s identity and its connection to its fans.
In all seriousness, here are a few questions inspired by homebrewers to ask yourself and your own organization moving forward:
If this article has sparked thoughts and questions, and you’d like to do some brainstorming, please don’t hesitate to contact the team at A-LINE – either at our office, or over a beer.
Untamed Beer Blog Link: