Involving Customers is Vital to New Product Development

Using taproom feedback was vital in the formation of a new hard sparkling water for Eel River.

Craft Clarity is a new product the brewery has developed and is releasing in cans now.

“We decided to get our customers more involved with the process at our local pub,” explained Jordan Utz the Marketing Coordinator for the California brewery.

After each batch was created, they had their customers try it, and answer questions about what they just consumed. The questionnaire was mainly geared towards the flavor aspect of the product.

“Their feedback was critical, and played a key role in the overall development up to the final stages,” Utz said.

The most important aspects that Eel River wanted to capture was flavor.

“We did not want it to be to overbearing, or non-existent,” Utz said. “Since this product is like no other, we had to go through many trials to perfect Craft Clarity to what we had envisioned when we started. With the feedback from our customers, we were finally were able to get it exactly where we wanted it. … We feel very confident in the product and wanted to make sure that we were bringing the top flavors to our patrons. Being able to give the consumers what they want is our top priority, and every response helped us to achieve the perfect Craft Clarity.”

Utz noted that gaining possible a new customer base is always a great benefit from a new product as Eel River and will always strive to have something for every taste.

“Craft brewed hard sparkling water is so unique, and caters to a healthy lifestyle consumer, we feel that a lot of people will be able to relate to it,” Utz said.

The idea of Craft Clarity came from Eel River’s ongoing dedication of providing their consumers with their needs.

“Our team saw a demand for a product that would coincide more with the health conscious audience. We wanted to offer a refreshing, low carb, zero sugar, gluten free alternative, and Craft Clarity was born,” Utz said.

The heat of summer seemed to be the most fitting release time for a product like this. Raspberry and Ginger-Lime are two flavors that Eel River feels everyone can enjoy. It will be found at many different events, and festivals this summer that the brewery is a part of. They also are doing a lot of cross promotion, social media outreach, contest giveaways, as well as print and digital advertising.

“Online marketing is great, but we always like to showcase our new releases at events so we can get as much feedback from our customers as possible,” Utz said.

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