Are You BENCH-Marking Your Brand?

A belated Happy Valentines Day! Talking of love, what’s not to love about combining a passion for beer AND branding?

Short of becoming a brand manager for a craft brewer (but then I am limited to one brewery!) the next best thing is to slowly make our way around the various craft breweries and do the taste test of beer AND branding.

Recently we had a great experience at a local craft brewer – Bench Brewing in Beamsville, Ontario. As you can see, the building is a combination of old and new. In fact, the old is a former school that a friend of ours started her teaching career in.

Now if you were to believe recent media headlines, Trouble brewing: Is Canada’s craft-beer industry headed for a spill? this is an industry headed for a bump.

But our BENCH visit certainly tells me this is one brewer who’s future is frothy because they are investing in branding to their customers.

We can often learn from other examples, even if they are not in the same industry. Here is what you can take away from our BENCH experience for your business;

BENCH Brand Lessons

B – Brand – Bench is spending time and money on the brand experience. Not only are they competing with other brewers but there are well over 100 wineries around all trying to attract the visitors to the Niagara region. Jeff Bezos of Amazon said “Your brand is what people say about when you are not in the room” Well for Bench perhaps is what people say about you when they are not in their taproom and I have told numerous people about our visit because of the brand work they have done.

E – Emotion – from the building, the design, the greeting we received, the engagement with the staff, the food that accompanied the beer – it all made for a great visit and solidified an emotional connection to the brand.

N – Novel – Even something that seems simple, like the information cards for each beer is an extra touch you do not see at most craft brewers but it helps make the connection to their products. I took those cards from my sampling and looked for them in the bottle room to take home the ones I liked and have since looked for them in the LCBO.

C – Clarity – they know what they do and they remain focused on that vision. In fact, they follow the 3 C’s of branding well – Clarity of message, Consistent delivery of the brand experience and Constantly making sure it is working.

H – Hospitality – The energy in the tasting room immediately had a relaxed, friendly atmosphere that made you feel welcome. Our server even told us that it felt like working for a big family. Check out the about page on the website and you will see what she means – Bench – About Us

A final thing that made us smile as we left. It was a cold day and they even had an outside fire burning with an outgoing greeter inviting us to sit down and chat! It really did feel like being at home or the cottage!

What experiences have you had with other brands that you have considered or implemented in your business?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.