This Small Switch Gave a Key to Long-Term Growth for Societe​

​When Societe opened ​its doors in 2012​ — now a decade ago —​ founder and CEO Doug Constantiner said it was relatively simple to grow.

​”​Craft beer was the hot alcohol​ ​​beverage product and it was easy to capture shares without much strategy​,” he admitted.

​But as the number of breweries grew across the country, and especially in Societe’s home area of San Diego​, growth doesn’t come as easily. That meant looking inward for reflection on what the now 10-year-old brand wanted to do. That is what Constantiner shared with Brewer was a key driver in the past few years when it comes to knowing what is next in terms of growth and sustainability in a crowded marketplace.

​”​By the end of the last decade, we knew that craft beer wasn’t growing like it used to and that we’d have to become strategic and tactical with our decisions,” he said. “We used to make decisions based on emotions and feelings, while now our decisions are fact-based and grounded in numbers.”

Having just started canning its beer before the pandemic shut down in March 2020, going from a highly on-site focused distribution to an ever-expanding distribution and rapid growth, Societe tripled production ​and is setting itself up for further expansion into Los Angeles and Northern California.

The most important key driver for growth has been bringing on a chairman of the board ​ to the company in the form of ​Jim Buechler​​ and formulating long-term growth plans that ​the company then whittle​s​ down to yearly goals to execute​.

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“If successful, ​[it] ​will help us attain our long-term goals​,” Constantiner said​. ​Also, working on organizational health through communicating ​any plans to the staff and getting everyone on board​ has been important.

“[We want everyone] rowing in the same direction to achieve our goals as a team​,” he said.

A third strategy Constantiner said is sticking to ​the brewery’s vision and values, which ​he said Buechler helped put together.

​”​Whenever there is the temptation to stray from our core business, we’re able to go back to our vision and values and remember that we are a company that aims to brew great beer first and ensure we live our company values day in and day out​,” Constantiner said. “We like to keep it simple​.”​

​One move the brewery has set forth is the addition of a new location, putting its first ​satellite tasting room in San Diego’s oldest neighborhood, Old Town. ​Although the space in its entirety isn’t expected to open until early 2023, Societe fans can look forward to a Fall 2022 pop-up​ for a sneak peek. Until then, the 2,686 square-foot tasting room will undergo renovations ​by ​adding a beer bar, retail shop, and onsite kitchen.

Societe offers a wide selection of beer including its core lineup and seasonal specialty IPAs. Its core lineup includes flagship IPA, The Pupil; Light Beer; Session IPA and two-time GABF gold medal-winning The Coachman, Constantiner’s favorite beer, the award-winning Blonde Ale, The Harlot; and the newest addition to the lineup, Bulbous Flowers, a sticky and fresh Hazy IPA with a West Coast finish.

In celebration of its 10th Anniversary, Societe is also launching the Tenth Ann’y, a 10th anniversary exclusive 10% ABV Triple IPA, and one of the hoppiest drinks the brewery has ever created. The Tenth Ann’y is a celebration of hops and the tireless passion that makes Societe what it is.

Photo Courtesy Societe Brewing

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