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It’s Just Beer.

From The Iron Horse Brewery Blog

It’s Just Beer.


I am often asked, “what’s your job like, marketing for iron horse brewery?”

By often I mean 1 person, every 3 years, even though I have only officially been doing this job for 9 months. For the record, she is still the boss of me.

My answer to this fictional-question-for-the-purpose-of-this-post is always the same. “it’s beer. it sells itself”.

This is, of course, a very shallow and lazy answer. After indulging in a couple of pints of Iron Horse IPA, I really start to understand what this gig is all about.

It’s about the people.

The amazing customers who willingly send us emails and facebook posts and twitter tweets about Irish Death or High Five Hefe and how the beer inspired them to want to make love to silk bags full of puppy ears. Yes, I hyperlinked to our social media profiles, because well, that’s my job.

It’s about all the high fives that people give each other in our locations or at brewer’s nights or at very, very busy beer festivals.

And, the IHB cousins, as we call each other internally, are an incredible group of people, each with their own unique blend of flaw and awesome.

Every piece of material that gets generated or an idea for an app or a marketing strategy that doesn’t work (remember pass the death?) ultimately represents these humans as a whole. While I accept and willingly take the responsibility for failed marketing initiatives, it is absolutely impossible to have any modicum of success without the personality, diversity and enthusiasm that each of the brewery cousins provide. It’s that energy…

    Holy shit. Did I just use “energy”? I must be suffering from lack of sleep.

    Oh well, F*#k it.

It is that energy (ihb cousins + ihb fans) that drives marketing. Which reminds me…

Even though I just said it’s about the people, It’s really about the experience.

More than anything else, Iron Horse Brewery is ultimately about the experience. I just said that in my bolded statement. Stupid redundancy.

The brewers hope your experience with their hand crafted beer is amazing, each and every time.
The serving staff hope your experience in our establishments is superior in both customer service and beer quenching satisfaction.
Sales hopes their accounts – wholesale and retail have the best possible experience through their attentiveness to detail and willingness to solve problems.
Greg and Gary hope your experience with the beer you drink and the staff you encounter is an authentic one, even if it goes against a traditional desired outcome. (see Gregs post about people over profit)

Marketing’s job is to simply make you aware of these beer experience engagement opportunities, through the execution of made-up phrases like beer experience engagement opportunities and more to the point by delivering an authentic, and, perhaps, slightly irreverent message about all things Iron Horse Brewery.

So, if I have this right, marketing for IHB should be based on the following formula:

Great Beer + Great People x (Irreverence ÷ Pi) = A Great Experience.

I suppose that means you could have the following formulas, which clearly undermines the original:

Great Beer = Great Experience – Great People(Irreverence ÷ Pi) or
Great People = (Great Experience – Great Beer) ÷ (Irreverence ÷ Pi)

Or maybe this is all nonsense and marketing really is just about the beer, which is (expletive) delicious, btw, and all of you should go out and buy 11 bottles have four pints this week.

Stay tuned next week when Natalia discusses Life Lessons from Yeast even though that has nothing to do with marketing. Or maybe it will be about the cat dressed up in shark suit sitting on roomba. We’re not sure yet.


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Tyler Sharp
June 27, 2013 12:07 pm

GB = Great Beer
GE = Great Experience
GP = Great People
I = Irreverence
Pi = An irrational number

The horror of including an irrational number inside any formula that includes a unit of biological organisms is staggering.

Take your formula:
GB = GE-GP(I/Pi)

It is not difficult to achieve:
GB = GE-(GPxI)/(GPxPi)

Regardless of the unit of persons defined within “people,” you have just doomed someone (or each individual member of that group depending on how we distribute the multiplicative factor amongst them) to an infinitely fractional existence. Why you would do such a thing to any person is beyond me, much less a person ostensibly defined as great!

(Can’t keep himself from laughing)

Good article, I look forward to reading more.


Silk bags filled with puppy ears? Not saying that you are wrong, it’s just the mental image…

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