Founders is a craft beer brand from Nelson run by the Duncan family who have been brewing for 160 years.
The craft beer market in New Zealand is second only to wine in terms of the number of brands in the supermarket. Getting noticed is hard enough; getting volume amongst a hugely fickle group of experimenters and faddists is the really tricky part. Many brewers struggle to make any profit after years of struggle.
A digitally based campaign was deemed appropriate to re-launch the brand. Press and digital ads drove consumers online to a website where a series of tests allowed them access to join the Founders Family. Once successfully completed, applicants put up their portrait on the wall and invited friends. One lucky winner was ’adopted’ into the family, has a table kept for them at the brewery café, and won their own brewery, albeit a small one.
Founders' sales in the first full year are heading towards 41,000 cases. Within 8 months they achieved a grocery share of 3.4%, which is in the region of 170% over target and from a total Marketing spend of $168K a Gross Profit of $445K was achieved.
Most importantly, the family and the brand have now been set up to be a success for years to come. In fact with success like this they might look at the first 159 years of brewing as having merely been a warm up!