How can we tap into the emerging market of craft beer and get people to buy their IPA’s, triples or pale ales online? How do people discover new beers and decide what to buy?
Following beerlovers & -likers and brewing new ideas on the insights in a design sprint taught us which ideas have potential to develop.
When you think The Netherlands, you think beer. But while the market for craft beer is exploding, beer is one of the few products people don’t yet buy online. That’s exactly what Beerwulf, a Heineken start-up in craft beers, wants to change. And of course we were very happy to help. We never say no to a great project, especially when there’s beer involved.
First step was getting to know our target audience. Before we dove into this collaboration, Beerwulf had already done a lot of research. Based on the insights they gathered they divided the target audience in beerlikers and beerlovers. As the name already suggests, the likers like beer, but the lovers are positively infatuated with the golden beverage. This influences their behavior towards the way they experience craft beers as well as the way they make their purchasing decisions.
We followed our beerlikers and -lovers, with a goal to understand the way they experience craft beers. Why do they drink it? With whom? Is the setting or occasion important? Through Whatsapp they sent us updates on their craft beer experiences. In return we got to the bottom of every stage of the process by asking them a lot of questions. This first stage gave us some valuable insights. For example, we noticed that there is not a hard division between the two groups, but that the likers and lovers found themselves on a gliding scale. This first part of the project also prepared our participants for the second stage. Yes, it’s group interview time!
Two group interviews allowed us to dive deeper in the beerliking and -loving minds of our participants. We set the scene to get to the ‘why’ behind their behavior. During the interviews we noticed a few discrepancies between the likers and lovers, but also a lot of similarities.
Craft beer aficionado are an explorative species. They prefer to try out new beers over drinking something they already know. And when abroad, they want to drink beer like the locals. Drinking craft beers is an experience.
We set out a Design Sprint to generate a viable concept to make the online buying of craft beers a better experience. Based on the insights from our research, we set a clear goal and had lots of healthy discussion. Combined with several brainstorm sessions and a few liters of coffee this turned into tons of ideas. This pile converged into two key concepts.
The value of a Design Sprint became very clear when we tested these concepts. One was a yay, the other a definite nay. This insight allowed us to abandon the concept that flopped and put more time and effort into the one that was a success. Without wasting a lot of time, effort and money we knew what worked and not. All based on insights from the beerliking and -loving people the experience is intended for. In the end Beerwulf left our office with a sound understanding of their target audience and a viable concept for their online endeavours.
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Beers tasted together