​3 ​Strategies that Have Helped Dust Bowl Bloom

In the March/April issue of Brewer, we spoke with the founders and management staff of Turlock, California’s Dust Bowl Brewing. The California brand has experienced tremendous growth and Brett Tate, Brett Honoré​ and Brewmaster Don Oliver shared their experiences.

But ​also in the conversation was Marketing & Public Relations Manager, Michelle Peterson who explained how a shift in 2019 really helped the brand bloom, even with pandemic constraints.

Brand Refresh

A refresh in 2019 went all across the board, Peterson said. The refresh saw a new logo while tidying up all of the packaging from year rounds to the seasonals, which created a consistent look for consumers to grab off the store shelf.

“I think it was one of those things that we had in order that helped us with growth that we saw in the off-premise,” she said. “Because we looked good on the shelf, we were poised to respond to the chain growth.”

The brand has worked with Seattle’s Blind Tiger Design for almost 10 years and Peterson said having a design agency is an extension of Dust Bowl’s marketing team.

“They know our brand really well, and they have helped us grow in that regard, too,” she said. “I think we’re now a well-oiled machine when it comes to our design and packaging.”

Increased Social Media Presence

Dust Bowl also added a dedicated social media person, which was a huge catalyst, Peterson said. 

“Old fashion PR is really kind of going to the wayside,” she admitted. “But having a dedicated person drive that message, for us, was a big turning point. And really, it stems back to the hiring of Marc Jalbert (Director of Sales), who had that vision and helped give our company a little more direction, and the budget to get behind the rebrand and the packaging. 

READ MORE: Dust Bowl Hires Jalbert as First Director of Sales

Wholesale Partnerships

​”​Chains are more demanding, so we had to have the right kind of point of sale​,” she said​, explaining the brand has had a huge launch with ​a new brand, ​Taco Truck Lime. 

​”​We’ve never come out in the past with a 12-pack at the same time as a six-pack but we did so with ​Taco ​Truck Lime​,” she said. “We feel like there is a niche in that retail sector, where people are going to be grabbing a 12-pack over a six​-​pack of that​.”

Wholesaler​ partnerships have been a tremendous partner​ in growth, she added.

​”[It] ​has really proven to be of great value​,” she said. “Over time, they helped create some demand. And now we speak to them on a daily basis. All of our sales team ​…​ will be working more closely with the wholesalers. And we’re really working on those relationships.​”​

​​”​They believe in our brand as much as we do now. And it’s mutually beneficial for them to go out there and sell. People love the beer, so it makes my job really fun because to make it look good and knowing what’s inside the can is even better. It makes for a great experience for the consumer.​”​

Look for the March/April issue of Brewer​ in your mailbox soon! If you are a brewery owner or manager, subscribe for free today!

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