Tips for Utilizing Events to Connect with Consumers

Sometimes the liquid alone won’t bring in a consumer. Especially for smaller breweries that may be the only connection to local craft beer, it can be vital for a brewery to be an integral part of its community. That’s where great event planning can help as well.

Sam Pagano, the Brewmaster for City Steam Brewery in Hartford, Connecticut said it’s a huge part of a brewery to be a part of the fabric of their community.

“While larger regional breweries are starting to finally feel a crunch in sales, most smaller, localized taprooms still thrive,” he noted. “We depend on their consumption, so it’s always good to give something in return for their patronage.”

It’s important to Short’s Brewing founder Joe Short.

“I want our brewery to be “the hub” of the community,” said Short, who started his brewery as a brewpub in the small town of Bellaire, Michigan. “It’s a non partisan operation that serves the purpose of sustenance, gathering and conversation. I believe that every community has a culture and I also believe that all cultures should have beer.Beer has been a part of our communities for thousands of years. As a brewer, I believe we have a duty to serve and provide for the community.”

Short said Short’s participates in a lot of programs and events to connect to the northern Michigan community.

“We help the Father Fred Food Drive. We speak at Rotary and Lions Clubs. We provide lots and lots of donations which support all kinds of causes,” he said. “We work closely with the local trails groups, The Downtown Development Authority, Land Conservancy and water protection. A lot of our events, like our Anniversary Party are great ways to engage with the community directly and also serve.”

In Santa Rosa, Florida, Grayton Beer Company is involved in roughly 70 area events including 30A Songwriters Festival, the Seaside School Half Marathon & 5K and Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation.

“These three events alone introduce Grayton Beer Company to its attendees, but when coupled with the smaller community events we are a part of we have been able to make connections within our community we might not have had the opportunity to otherwise,” said head brewer Tyler White.

While White and his crew spread the beer love among numerous types of charitable organizations, there are a handful that hit close to home.

“Our brewery is located in Northwest Florida which has an incredibly dense military population,” White said. “We never pass up on an opportunity to lend a hand to those who have served our country. In fact, every November 11 we host a Veterans Day celebration where all military vets drink free. It’s the least we can do

“Our staff is a family unit, many of which have families of their own, and that is why children’s charitable groups sit near the top of our list for donations. Additionally, we work closely with the local Chamber of Commerce and Tourist Development Council to ensure we are involved where possible in their initiatives to develop our area.”

Most recently, Grayton has installed a donation form on its website to help aid in the influx of requests for donations.

“This allows us to streamline the process and weed out those who do not meet the qualifications such as being a registered 501(c)3,” White said. “We open our doors (and taps) to non-profit organizations regularly to help them turn beer into money for the cause. To date we have donated and helped raise thousands for hundreds of charitable causes in and around our distribution area.”

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