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2021 Beer Wars: Brands Are Gearing Up For Spring Holidays

March 5, 2021 Carolyn Harding

Spring holidays are often celebrated with group gatherings. However, it’s no secret that the ability to spend time with others has been impacted by the pandemic. This year, 49% of U.S. adults are planning to enjoy some form of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, according to the most recent survey from the National Retail Federation (NRF).

Even as more consumers are open to the idea of “normal life,” brands must keep in mind the adjustments many consumers will be making to their spring holiday celebrations. Major beer brands have recently leveraged strategic partnerships, brand revamps, social media promotions and user-generated content (UGC) campaigns to engage consumers with the right messaging and at the right places and the right times ahead of the upcoming holidays.

Guinness Tells Consumers To #MakeYourOwnParade This St. Patrick’s Day

Guinness apparel

In anticipation of a different kind of St. Patrick’s Day celebration, Guinness partnered with apparel company Carhartt to launch a line of co-branded apparel – inclusive of sweatshirts, hats and more – in an effort to keep consumers’ excitement swirling around the popular beer-drinking holiday. Branded merchandise has continued to grow in popularity, representing a fresh way to build brand awareness and reward customer loyalty while receiving free advertising from consumers. Using the hashtag #MakeYourOwnParade, Guinness and Carhartt are also encouraging consumers to “reimagine their St. Patrick’s Day celebrations from home” by sharing their at-home St. Patrick’s Day parades on social media.

Using the tagline “Work for the Better,” the campaign and branded merchandise pays tribute to “the hardworking men and women who ‘Work for the Better’ and help build a better world,” according to Carhartt’s official press release. This effort from Guinness and Carhartt is likely to resonate with today’s consumers, as people continue to gravitate toward brands displaying messaging that reflect the larger challenges the world is facing today. “The holiday has taken on a new meaning for us this year and, with this new collection, we remain strong in our commitment to uplifting people and communities during this time,” said Nikhil Shah, Guinness brand director.

Miller Genuine Draft’s New Brand Image Could Lure In Consumers Just In Time For The Spring Holidays

marketing dive miller

Miller Genuine Draft (MGD), part of the larger Molson Coors Beverage brand, recently revamped its brand logo and product packaging in an effort to spotlight the beer brand’s “genuineness” and increase brand excitement among consumers. The updated packaging is said to reflect a “rawer, more honest version” of MGD. This bolder look from MGD has the potential to help the beer brand’s in-store sales, which many beer brands have relied heavily on over the past year, as restaurants and bars closed in light of the pandemic. Especially ahead of a popular celebratory holiday like St. Patrick’s Day, the new packaging can help MGD to effectively elevate its image and stand out in what is a consistently crowded marketplace.

“Consumer tastes in the past 20 years have shifted to lighter beers and the newer category of hard seltzers, but the pandemic has given brewers a chance to reinvigorate their brands in off-premise retail settings,” noted Marketing Dive reporter Robert Williams. Adding, “MGD has an opportunity to make its brand more distinct at stores and rebuild off-premise sales.”

Goose Island Beer Company Introduces Unlikely Partnership With Easter Favorite Cadbury Crème Egg

Goose Island Beer CompanyCadbury Crème

Goose Island Beer Company is putting all its eggs in the Cadbury Crème basket ahead of 2021 Easter celebrations. Teaming up with the Easter candy staple, Goose Island has launched a limited-edition “Goo-Beer-Lee Creme Stout.” The beverage perfectly lines up with the upcoming Easter holiday while also celebrating the iconic Cadbury Creme Egg’s 50th anniversary. Goose Island is attracting consumers to the special beer creation through social media promotions and a custom landing page on the Goose Island website, which encourages visitors to sign up for the Goose Island mailing list for all the latest updates.

“With the Golden Goo-Beer-Lee Creme Stout we knew that we would be reaching a wide range of people with different levels of experience with craft beer!” said Andrew Walton, Goose Island UK’s head brewer. “We wanted to make sure that for whoever tried this beer, it would be unique and delicious.”

While 2021 celebrations may look different than in years past, beer brands should capitalize on the opportunity to connect with consumers early and often ahead of popular holidays. Launching fresh, creative initiatives, like those of Guinness, MGD and Goose Island, can aid brand efforts to differentiate and resonate with consumers during a time of celebration.

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About the Author

Carolyn Harding

Carolyn Harding is an Associate Manager of Communications at Digital Media Solutions (DMS), the fastest-growing independent digital performance marketing company. DMS helps its clients accelerate growth by deploying diversified and data-driven customer acquisition solutions that deliver scalable, sustainable and measurable marketing results. DMS performance marketing solutions connect the right consumers with the right offers at the right time to achieve the marketing objectives of our clients. DMS is continually innovating to provide new and emerging media and technology solutions that minimize waste and maximize results across the most competitive industries. Since its inception, DMS has demonstrated incredible year-over-year growth which has earned recognition on the Inc. 5000 list in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

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