The Brewer Magazine
Tips For How Your Brewery Can Be More Community-Focused
by Jon Sicotte on October 18, 2017
Connecting to the people in your community can be a vital piece to achieving growth and consumers. Sure, the liquid can be great, but in today’s local business culture, public outreach is just as key.
“Any business that benefits from the citizens of that surrounding community as well as receives the support of the other businesses and city associations around them should always be grateful,” said Ashley Kinart, the Brewmaster for Middleton, Wisconsin’s Capital Brewery. “Manufacturing plants and businesses based around the sales of alcoholic beverages aren’t always supported by 100 percent of the population for a wide variety reasons, so not only keeping positive interactions, but also giving back to the community is very important.”
She added that breweries can also serve as a gathering space for community functions, so being part of the planning or the initiator of community happenings is a great way to establish a prominent place in the community.
In Roanoke, Virginia, Soaring Ridge Craft Brewers does several regularly occurring events including Big Lick SOUP — a micro grant project where community groups pitch an idea in need of funding to members of the community.
“Those members vote on the project they would like to support all done over a free community meal,” said Soaring Ridge Operations and Sales Manager Claire Ainsworth. “We also host monthly fundraisers for the Science Museum, called STEM Tavern and for the local animal shelters called Pups & Pints.”
Ainsworth said the brewery is owned and operated by people who genuinely love the Roanoke area. “The owners all grew up here and want the Roanoke region to be a thriving community,” she said. “Our line of thinking when we work to set up and be apart of community fundraisers is simple: we need to support the people who support us. That means we give back to the community every chance we get.”
In Idaho, Payette Brewing is actively involved in helping its Boise community when and where they can.
Every Monday evening at the brewery, they host Kegs4Kause, which is a unique, recurring event as a means to give back to the community.
“Every Monday evening, 50 percent of proceeds from beer sales in the taproom are donated to a featured Idaho non-profit,” said Paige Coyle. “Organizations apply through our website, and go through a selection process. We encourage all selected non-profits to make the most of it by inviting friends, family and promoting their night in the community. We spread the word of our Kegs4Kause program throughout the year, then each Monday we feature the specific organization.
“It has become one of our favorite and fulfilling programs at the brewery. We like to help our community and support those who do the same.”