Crafting brands: shaping the stories behind beverage marketing

Continuing a series focused on industry craft, Fine partner and chief strategist Josh Kelly looks at how a craft mindset has come to define the beverage industry and influence all aspects of branding, from making to serving, and (most of all) how creatives are guiding the story.

There’s never been a more confusing and refreshing time to be thirsty.

A dizzying array of drinkable brands crams grocery store aisles, bar shelves, and restaurant menus. In the U.S., that’s 6,000+ craft breweries, 9,600+ wineries, 1,500+ craft distilleries, and ubiquitous options in coffee, tea, sodas, bottled waters, energy drinks, and even exotic new ciders, coconut waters, kombuchas, bubble matchas, and chais. Now you’re just making this stuff up.

All these brands can’t reasonably be looking for mass consumer adoption; they’re looking for a more limited, but highly involved, audience. In beverage categories, it falls to marketers to find points all along the “supply chain” to win over those willing to pay a higher price point for a brand that has a story behind every sip.

It’s why craft in the creative trade has become more critical than ever, adding perceived value to the brands you drink.

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