Pittsburgh Brewing Marketer of the Year

Pittsburgh-brewing-brandmill-iron-city-marketing-awardBrandMill’s marketing partnership with Pittsburgh Brewing Company (brewers of Iron City Beer) helped earn the iconic brand its first Marketer of the Year Award (Consumer Products) from the Pittsburgh American Marketing Association. In BrandMill’s 11-year history, the Pittsburgh marketing firm has earned four Marketer of the Year and one Grand Marketer of the Year Award (performance-based) for its clients!


BUILD TRUST, IMPROVE PRODUCT AND INNOVATE
For the past decade and more, Pittsburgh Brewing Company has undergone multiple ownership changes, bankruptcy and moved its brewing operations 60 miles outside of Pittsburgh to City Brewing in  Latrobe, PA generating a ton of negative feelings and record low sales over many years for this historic Pittsburgh based brand established in 1861.

PITTSBURGH-BREWING-PIRATES-LANDING-BRANDMILLHowever, new Pittsburgh Brewing CEO Brian Walsh felt the time was right to drive favorable awareness about the brand because through his team’s hard work, relationships had been positively re- established with its wholesaler and distributor networks (10+ new sales people on the street vs. 1-2 over the past few years); the new contracted brewery operator was producing a higher quality consistent product (due to more modern equipment); relationships with Pittsburgh’s sports teams (Pirates, Steelers, Penguins) had been reignited and the brand was about to launch a new “craft” line under the name of Block House Brewing.

PITTSBURGH-BREWING-PIRATE-CAN-PRESS-KIT-BRANDMILLMARKETING COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGY
With a low, limited budget, BrandMill was charged to create a low cost/high impact “WOW” Communications Strategy to excite the media and regional beer drinkers and to show that Pittsburgh Brewing was here to stay and getting better. Pittsburgh Brewing wanted to demonstrate (offer proof) to its customers and prospective/lapsed customers that they should be proud to know that the brand was back to its exciting innovative times and wanted to re-earn its trust as the favorite beer of Pittsburgh Nation. One press announcement would not suffice and a flurry of media executions was required.

THE FOUNDATIONAL IDEA – PITTSBURGH BREWING COMPANY’S PRESS KIT PLATFORM
BrandMill decided that Pittsburgh Brewing needed a “Press Kit Platform” to communicate and integrate its multiple messages and created a low cost 4X-hit Press Kit Platform. All targeted Pittsburgh Regional Media would receive low cost/high impact (size, color, content) press kits (4x – repeatedly – over 4 consecutive months) to guarantee readership, interest, curiosity, follow-up and coverage.

PITTSBURGH-BLOCK-HOUSE-BREWING-PUMPKIN-ALE-CHOCOLATE-BOCK-BRANDMILL-PRESS-KITPittsburgh Brewing’s Press Kit Platform enabled it to generate quick and extensive favorable brand awareness throughout Western Pennsylvania about the brand’s new product launches of its Pittsburgh Pirates (baseball team) themed cans; its new Block House Brewing (Craft Entry) Brand (i.e., Pumpkin Ale and Double Chocolate Bock); and, its new Red Hot Iron beer to further extend and enhance its brand recognition of the favorite beer of Pittsburgh Nation!


LOW COST, LOW TECH, HIGH IMPACT IDEA
The uniqueness of this Media Kit/s (platform) is that it’s an ‘old school’ low cost and high impact effort wrapped inside a unique platform of four consecutive new brand launches.

BrandMill used common plastic and cardboard mailing tubes to safely transport glass bottles of beer along with a press release and related elements (mnemonic devices) to the production of each beer brand – i.e., themed Pirates cans, Pumpkin Spice candle and Blockhouse key to “unlock the flavor of the Pumpkin Spice brand, and Chocolates and Chocolate scented candle for the Double Chocolate Bock and Red Hot candies for the Red Hot Iron brand.The press kit platform demonstrates to the media the care and seriousness that Pittsburgh Brewing is taking with its announcements – a flurry of positive, exciting and innovative news that the media needs to take notice, because their readers/viewers/listeners will be greatly interested.

 

PITTSBURGH-BREWING-RED-HOT-IRON-BRANDMILL-PRESS-KITFLAWLESS TECHNICAL EXECUTION
The color, graphics, messaging and “surprise and delight’ contents of the Press Kit Platform set it apart from all other communications pieces the media typically receive such as a boring, 1-D press release. The unique sizes of the mailing tubes demands that the recipient open it and discover what’s inside. And, the media thought the effort was clever, fun and interesting and drove their interest in our Pittsburgh Brewing’s NEW NEWS!

 

CAMPAIGN RESULTS
Pittsburgh Brewing’s Press Kit Platform led customers to basically say that, “Wow, it’s great so see Pittsburgh Brewing is back to doing exciting things – I can’t wait to see what’s up next!”

PITTSBURGH-BREWING-MEDIA-TOUR-BRANDMILL

Pittsburgh Brewing earned tremendous regional press coverage from both Print and Broadcast channels. Pittsburgh Brewing’s CEO was interviewed extensively on local business talk shows via Pittsburgh’s CBS and NBC affiliates) channels. Pittsburgh Brewing’s Social Media channels (primarily Facebook) surged to improved performance/traffic by 40%+ with a tremendous, enthusiastic response and without broadcast or print advertising support!Pittsburgh Brewing’s Press Kit Platform helped it to increase its sales throughout Q2-Q3 while the major American Style Lager brands (Budweiser, Coors, Miller) earned negative sales for the same time period throughout the region. In fact, its new Block House Brewing Pumpkin Ale brand sold out in record time!
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Iron City beer plays ball with Pittsburgh’s sports teams

Pirates-cansHere’s a nice story that the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette recently ran about our BrandMill client Iron City Beer and their local sports partners – the Pittsburgh Pirates and Steelers!

We’ve been working with Pittsburgh Brewing (Iron City Beer) for sometime now helping them to rebuild their brand presence and favorable awareness with the regional media and customers.  And, I’m proud to say that we’re tracking well together and the Pittsburgh region is going to like what we’re cooking!

As Pittsburgh natives, we’re proud to say that Iron City Beer is coming back strong!

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10th Annual Hallowboo!

Hallowboo-posterOur client Idlewild & SoakZone has been running its famous “HALLOWBOO!” event for 10 years and we’ve been with them from the start.
Hallowboo is a great example of adding a valuable new product experience (i.e., trick or treating through its famous Story Book Forest) that’s unlike anything else and creating a win/win program for the amusement park company and for its guests.
HALLOWBOO is experiential marketing at its finest – and a perfect combination of low-tech and high-tech – making memories that last a lifetime!
And, it’s great ideas such as HALLOWBOO! – flawlessly executed and continuously improved – that has earned Idlewild & SoakZone Park ‘Best Park in the World for Children” recognition for five consecutive years by the readers of Amusement Today Magazine!
Idlewild’s HALLOWBOO runs every Saturday and Sunday, October 4 – 26. Hope to see you there!
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Pitttsburgh Post-Gazette Features Shatterproof

Shatterproof-pittsburgh-logoMany thanks to Brian O’Neill of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, for this great column we earned for our client Shatterproof, founder Gary Mendell and the upcoming June 25th Pittsburgh Shatterproof Challenge event at the Westin Convention Center Hotel.

We’re proud to report that the media coverage our BrandMill Public Relations team earned for Shatterproof both in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and on KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today LIVE Show has helped sell-out all rappelling slots!

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Shatterproof Pittsburgh Stronger Than Addiction

Please join our friends at Shatterproof.org on Wednesday, June 25 at the Westin Convention Center Hotel in downtown Pittsburgh, to raise awareness and funds for research, prevention and support of those afflicted with Drug and Alcohol Addiction.

Shatterproof-Pittsburgh-PasadenaSponsor or rappel 26 stories down the side of the Westin!

Rappel times are going fast – hurry to sign up today for the Pittsburgh event here.

Here’s an interview our BrandMill Public Relations team coordinated yesterday for founder Gary Mendell on KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today LIVE.

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Idlewild & SoakZone Opens 137th Season with Daniel Tiger

idlewild-daniel-tiger-wtae-pittsburghHere’s a nice PR piece we earned for one of our favorite clients and places – Idlewild & SoakZone – which recently appeared on Pittsburgh’s ABC Affiliate WTAE-TV.

The Park’s coverage discusses the highlights of its 137th season, its 4th consecutive Golden Ticket Award for being recognized as the Best Kids Park in the World by the readers of Amusement Today Magazine. And, a new Daniel Tiger Meet & Greet attraction – be sure to check out the Park this season – http://www.idlewild.com/

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BrandMill is Pumping Iron

Iron-City-ToastIn the 10+ years BrandMill has existed, we’ve been blessed to have worked with some of the most beloved brands in the Pittsburgh region such as Duquesne University, Kennywood Park, Idlewild & SoakZone, the Gateway Clipper Fleet and more!

And now, we’re proud to announce that we’re pumping Iron with the Pittsburgh Brewing Company and Iron City Beer!

Stay tuned for some exciting news that will be flowing from this famous brand!

We’re just getting warmed up!

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Duquesne University’s Entrepreneurial Growth Conference

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 7.40.51 PMIf you’re an entrepreneurial led small/medium sized business you should be heading to Duquesne University’s Small Business Development Center’s Entrepreneurial Growth Conference tomorrow, Thursday, June 5.

If you’re going, please connect with me.  As a sponsor, BrandMill will have a demo table and I’ll (Steve Wayhart) be moderating a lunch table discussion about, “How to Profitably Build Sales” and leading a discussion about “Shortcuts to Social Media” at 3:30 p.m.

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Constant Contact Email Marketing All Star

Constant-Contact-email-AllStar-LogoAs a Pittsburgh-based marketing consultancy, for the past 10 years we’ve partnered with Constant Contact to provide our clients with the best online marketing products and services available. You may know Constant Contact as the trusted marketing advisor to more than half a million small businesses worldwide.

Every year they recognize top performing users with their annual All Star Awards. we’re proud to announce that out of more than 500,000 Constant Contact users, our email marketing work for a great number of clients has earned us another 2013 All Star Award.

If you’re ready to grow your business with award-winning online marketing services, email Stephen Wayhart today or call him at 412.401.0555.

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