Founders has been posting double-digit growth numbers for some time, and this year it recorded the largest volume gain of any craft brewery. The vast majority of this remarkable growth arose from a single offering: All Day IPA Session Ale.
To be sure, the Founders folks created a wonderful beer with lower alcohol levels (4.7% ABV) to deliver on the session-ale promise. Its slight hint of grapefruit flavor even suggests the summer peak selling season vibe. We would never minimize the role of product quality in a brand's success. That said, there are way more quality products out there than there are brands posting Founders kind of success. The difference? Founders identified and delivered on a key, proven benefit others had simply abandoned. And their "All Day" brand name registered product distinctiveness beautifully. When we spotted their insight and their execution, we were confident enough they had a winner to conclude our 2013 article with "Bet on it."
Yes, we're patting ourselves on the back here. But more important, we're patting Founders on the back for a classic marketing success that has rocked the craft beer category.