You didn’t think we were done with the brew tour did you?! Shame on you if you did! No folks, we’re still here for you, watching out for the best and brightest craft brewers in the state to see what kind of inbound marketing tactics they’re successfully using to keep beer drinkers coming back for more! Is it your first time on the tour? Well here’s what you’ve missed so far:
As an up and coming Denver marketing company, we pride ourselves in everything local and anything disruptive. That’s why we love ourselves some Colorado craft brews! Not only do they make some of the most delicious beers that you’ll ever taste, but they also utilize a ton of inbound marketing tactics to reach and engage with their target market. Things like social media, blogs and email newsletters are all too common on these disruptive brewers’ websites and while they may not be running entire campaigns through us, they’re still taking advantage of plenty useful inbound techniques that make us so proud! So far we’ve toured Great Divide, New Belgium, Ska Brewing, Renegade, Breckenridge, TRiNiTY, and Colorado Native. With such an illustrious group of brewers already on the list who else could make the cut for great beer AND great marketing? Oh don’t worry baby birds, I’ll feed you!
Oskar Blues Brewery- The Stats
Location: Longmont, CO
Brewing Since: 1999 is when the owner’s restaurant was turned into a brew pub according to their website
Author’s Favorite Brew: Ten Fidy Imperial Stout
Recognized as one of the major up and comers in the brewing industry, Oskar Blues Brewery is the epitome of disruptive! With numerous restaurants, food trucks, tap rooms and brewing sites, these guys love to take the route less traveled when it comes to the beer business. Hell, they only sell their brews in cans, how disruptive is that?! Beyond their unique business expansion model and cool canning, OB has their social media marketing for Denver down pat, along with a very cool, very informative and interesting website. Overall, these guys are just awesome brewers and even better businessmen, so let’s take a closer look into their marketing and business efforts.
Unique and Disruptive Business Model
While this may not be an inbound marketing tactic, a disruptive and creative business model is something that many different businesses utilizing inbound tactics have in common. Whether it’s taking the extra time and energy to blog about topics useful to your customers or canning your entire line of beers and expanding into unchartered business ventures for breweries, disruption is great for business.
- The Cans- When OB first started brewing; distributing their beer in cans was unique and different. Not only did it help to differentiate the brand, but it also started a revolution, as more and more craft brewers around the country are beginning to can. The reason? Not only does canning save on costs for both materials and transportation, but it’s also better for the beer (less oxygen and sunlight) and better for the environment. I’m not sure if there’s a better way to establish yourself as a credible thought leader within an industry than by spearheading a canning revolution!
- Aggressive Expansion: We’ve all heard of a successful brewery opening up a restaurant or selling a few branded t-shirts and hats, but how about multiple restaurants, a food truck, an out of state brewery and A FARM? What started as a small restaurant in Lyons, Colorado with ambitions of becoming a brew pub a little over 10 years ago has now become one of the most diverse and successful micro brews in the state! Just like our Denver marketing company, Oskar Blues has created a litany of different offerings for their various buyer personas in an attempt to meet the varying needs of multiple customer bases. Big time beer lover and foodie? OB has plenty of options! Love beer, but live on the east coast? OB just opened a new brewery in North Carolina! Environmentally conscious? OB has a farm that grows their own hops, raises their own cattle AND feeds them the nutritious mash (a byproduct of the brewing process)! Each venture taps a new market for Oskar Blues, while differentiating the brand even more from its competition.
A Social Media Presence to Say the Least!
Any inbound marketing campaign needs to utilize the right social media channels in order to get the word out there about the brand and engage with its target audience. Oskar Blues has quite the campaign when it comes to its social media marketing for Denver. Let’s take a look at both their Facebook and Twitter pages to see what they’re doing right:
- Facebook- With custom images for the profile pictures and cover photos, smart and well advertised contests and best practices when it comes to status updates, this Facebook page is top notch.
- Custom images: OB’s Facebook page utilizes custom images for every part of their page, ranging from the profile pictures to the status updates to the cover photos promoting events and contests.
- Fan Appreciation Contests: Facebook users love contests run by their favorite companies and by the looks of it, Oskar Blues knows that. When you scroll through the numerous different cover photos used by the page, you can see the various contests and promotions used over time to now only make their fans happy but also collect contact information for newsletter and other uses! How very inbound marketing of you!
- Status Best Practice: Looking at OB’s timeline is like looking at a Denver marketing company’s dream page. Tons of fun and engaging photo and video sharing, awesome descriptions utilizing the new Facebook Hashtag and links to their website and event information for nearly every other post! You really can’t ask for anything more, so well done OB, well done.
- Twitter- More custom images dawn the Oskar Blues Twitter page, along with an interesting way to connect their enormous and diverse fan-base, and an awesome engagement strategy.
- Connecting Everyone Through One Feed: Because OB has so many different ventures, there are numerous twitter pages that represent the brands’ various updates. Each restaurant, food truck and brewery has their own twitter handle in order to update their unique customer-base on the happenings in their neck of the woods, while a company-wide twitter page serves as a hub for everything Oskar Blues by retweeting major updates from each individual page. So if you want to know about every cool thing happening to the OB brand then check out the main page, or if you just want to know what your favorite restaurant or local brewery is doing, follow that individual page instead.
- Engaging the Right Way: Engaging with your Twitter following and the overall Twitter community can be tricky. Oskar Blues does a great job by not only engaging with their following through retweets and fun conversations, but also by mentioning and retweeting other industry leaders and local businesses that have major influence on the site. Not only does this engage those pages, but it also allows for maximum exposure as they look to tap these pages’ following.
If you didn’t quite see why we were calling Oskar Blues Brewing disruptive beforehand, you should definitely have an idea why now. Not many breweries have what it takes to brew great beers, connect with a large fan-base AND expand into new markets; and that’s what makes these guys so special. Their savvy business choices and proper inbound marketing tactics have put them in an amazing place for business at this time, and we can’t wait to see what they can come up with next! Check them out for yourself! Follow them on Twitter here and like them on Facebook here to find out about all the exciting happenings going on right now for these guys!