What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
We’re definitely seeing more brand awareness. We actually see as many social posts coming out of California as we see in our home state of Indiana. There’s been an uptick in the online conversation about our brand in general, but we're also seeing an increase in those geographic regions where Firebelly focused their efforts.
It’s been great to see the response at our launch events in some of the best beer markets in the country. By engaging the influencers online in advance of the launch events, Firebelly gets them to not only attend the event but participate in interviews as well. Many of them also post on their own blogs or social networks, which then creates content for us as we’re building out in those markets. That’s exactly what we were hoping to get out of this engagement. In some of these markets, the sales have exceeded expectations. The return has been very worth the investment.
How did Firebelly Marketing perform from a project management standpoint?
Duncan's built a very good team. They're very responsive whenever we need something. They’re extraordinarily nimble. The beer industry is always changing and we made a lot of changes from our initial scope of work. We originally thought we would do more of the work in Indiana, but we realized those new markets were more important. They were very nimble and able to respond to what we needed. They’re so easy to work with. I can call Duncan and have a meeting within an hour. They do a great job of making sure the time spent working together is valuable for everybody.
What did you find most impressive about them?
They’ve basically become an extension of our company. I have a great rapport with everybody at Firebelly. I've worked with other agencies where we end up butting heads, but working with them is very seamless. They deliver added value, not extra work.
Are there any areas they could improve?
I always think agencies can improve their understanding of the craft beer industry. Obviously, it's tough for any agency to have as deep a knowledge of the industry as we do, so I definitely appreciate that Firebelly brought their staff down to the brewery for a tasting. The better they understand our industry, and how quickly it can change, is great.
Do you have any advice for potential customers?
Be open to their ideas. The ideas might feel a little bit uncomfortable at first, but trust that they know what they're doing. Allow them to lead the way because this is their area of expertise. As an outside agency, they can really help you see your brand in a new way.