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The Curious Case of the Rebranded Beer

By Liz, also posted in News on

A couple things came together this month that got a lot of you talking and made us stop and listen. The first was the re launch of our much loved Spindrift beer - still with the iconic blue bottle but with a new yellow wave design and the "East Coast Blonde" strapline. Customers wrote, phoned, tweeted and posted their feedback on Facebook with many of you missing the old design. The second was the launch of the Suffolk Curious County campaign aimed at attracting younger, social media-using and of course "curious" visitors to Suffolk. We at Adnams were involved in this campaign as we are members of the Visit East Anglia board, and we were very excited to see it launch. What we didn't anticipate was global commentary (yes it even reached Australia!) and a trending #proudtobecurious which divided the county. You can read The Guardian's take on the campaign here. What linked these campaigns, apart from Adnams involvement, was the passion, speed and depth of feedback which customers were able to give to the 'brand owners' and the feeling that customers have a voice and their own opinion on design and marketing campaigns. What seems to drive the most passionate feedback is that the brand or product has very strong loyalty and customer engagement. So, rather than feeling no news is good news, we should actually feel pleased to have gathered a response. The initial negative reaction to The Curious County from MPs came from the heart, from people who live and breathe the county and all that it stands for as a brand (and certainly I believe places can and should be marketed as brands). At Adnams, and in Suffolk, we aren't the only brands to receive such feedback - Boden was under fire this month from their "yummy mummy" core customers after hiring a supermodel which has got their brand in front of new customers. By contrast the recent change of the Ebay logo has not gathered anywhere near as much passion - perhaps it is just more subtle but I would argue it is a much less personal brand which is in fact one of the changes they wish to make through the rebrand. What social media has done for Adnams is to bring us much closer to our customers, and at last we get to hear the conversations that had been going on in pubs for years. We don't always like what we hear, but we do hope we always listen.