Even before that silly rant by Protz last month, it had become more than evident that BrewDog was taking paths not trod in an effort to get the word out about its beer. But all the focus was on their successful abuse of the old guard and those who were satisfied, including financially, with having had it all worked out - and not some of their other approaches:
... a group of design and media students from Wrexham's Glyndwr University have won an 'Apprentice' style contest to do just that. Mark Scott, Michelle Roberts, Qingyun Hu, Yz Wez and Phillip Chan had to design the bottle and packaging, pitch the brand and suggest the flavour of a new beer, which will be manufactured by Scottish firm BrewDog, for sale around the university. "We wanted our brand to feel Welsh, have strong associations with the university, and have a catchy name which people could remember to ask for when they'd had a few," explained Phillip Chan, part of the winning '1412' team.
While a small thing, it's part of the gathering story that BrewDog is not a one trick pony or the advertising gimmick that some would have it. Much has been said, for example, about their reaching out to bloggers but it is not a matter of just sending beers for reviews. Questions are asked and email discussions are held. A decision to be responsive seems to have been included in the marketing plan. I also like the idea that there is a range in price as well. Punk IPA has shown up on Ontario's shelves this month at a very locally modest $2.60 a bottle even as a bottle of Tactical Nuclear Penguin can be delivered to North America for a mere (but, face it, insane) $125.
Just as there is head scratching that no one thought of grabbing the work "punk" for an IPA and making it their own before - so, too, there must be some chin rubbing over not thinking to ignore convention in all ways to get the word out.