How to Market Your Craft Beer Correctly

If you’ve been carrying craft beers for a while and you haven’t experienced an upswing in business, you’re doing something wrong. Craft beer is the largest and fastest-growing segment of the beer market, and it should be giving your restaurant or bar a boost. Are you marketing to the right demographic? Here are some stats, compiled from a Nielsen-backed lecture from last year’s Craft Beer Conference.

The craft beer market is growing fast

The lecture, entitled “The Who, What, Where, When and How of the Craft Beer Consumer,” presented by Danny Brager, stated that almost one-third of beer buyers purchased a craft beer in the twelve months prior to the lecture. The lecture also stated that 47% of the craft beer market sales came from Millennials. Millennials make up 26.1% of the total adult population, so this is a huge market.

To best market to Millennials, use subtle, amusing copy that are heavily tied to technology. Since Millennials are always looking for the next cool gadget, an electronic beer menu would draw them in to your restaurant or bar.

Craft beer is full of delicious, luxurious variety…

…and that’s why people buy it. Craft beer costs quite a bit more than other beer segments, but it’s still a hot item, even in a depressed economy. Why? Brager’s lecture states that 50% of people polled in a study said they buy craft beers because the beers have so many flavors, which allows consumers to experiment. Other reasons for craft beer purchases:

  • 46% of respondents said that craft beer tastes better (it does)
  • 40% appreciate seasonal beer offerings
  • 36% of respondents said they buy craft beers as a treat of gift

Craft beers have a very specific demographic… so far

According to the numbers, white male Millennials and Gen-X’ers are the #1 consumers of craft beers, so your marketing efforts should be sure to take that exact demographic into account. (See the numbers here.) However, since the data states that craft beer is the fastest-growing sector of the market, other demographics are surely becoming interested in craft beers every day.

As always, when you are trying to decide exactly how to market your restaurant or bar, pay attention to who is in your restaurant and notice what they’re drinking and eating. It’s never a bad idea to talk to your customers and ask what they’re interested in. Most of your patrons will feel flattered by the attention, and you’ll gain valuable insight.

Photo licensed by Lindsey G.