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Home » Do Your Drinkers Consider “Sober October?”

Do Your Drinkers Consider “Sober October?”

  • 8 min read

This month we’re digging deep into the idea of non-alcoholic beverages and the size of the market for your craft beverage. Sober October, or Ocsober as the Australians celebrate it, relates to a month-long promotion centered around making healthy choices with respect to drugs and alcohol. Its origins are disputed with Macmillan Cancer Support in the UK or Life Education Australia both claiming ownership of the movement. But it most certainly pre-dated the campaign behind Dry January as a post-holiday-hangover-cure, and Dry July, the least marketed of the three. Which begs the question:

Does your tasting room make non-alcoholic options available to guests?

Friends drinking NA beer at a brewery photo for Sober October postThe team at Market Your Craft believes every craft beverage producer should take a build-or-buy position on NA drinks. Don’t believe us? Just look at the current selling environment for craft beverage producers:

  • Guests are asking for flavorful and fun non-alcoholic options other than water, soda and kombucha.
  • Owners and managers are looking creatively at ways to diversify and grow guest checks.
  • Drinker behavior is changing, especially among younger 21+ consumers.
  • Products that promote a healthy, balanced lifestyle are exploding right now, even in a down economic market.

And while your Production Team may be up for the challenge of introducing a flavorful variant of a popular core beverage, the process differs from traditional fermentation and could require a significant investment in equipment – some de-alcoholizers cost upwards of $100k to purchase!

We want to help demystify the non-alc category for you and your team with opportunities during October to connect at major industry events and virtual conferences. Together we’ll explore the sales upside to taking a position on NA beverages in your tasting room as well as the proven storytelling techniques to promote your offerings. You’ll find that marketing your non-alcoholic craft beverage is not an either-or proposition, but an opportunity to present current and new drinkers with occasions where they can say Yes! to NA options in addition to full-strength counterparts. Check out the list of events and client engagements below to see where we’re traveling next. And by all means, stop by to introduce yourself if you’re attending! logo for Sober October post’s 10th Anniversary Event
Excited to kick off Denver Beer Week and #GABF with a sponsorship of the Sober Lounge at’s 10th Anniversary Event! One of our clients, Partake Brewing Company, is a leading non-alcoholic beer brand in North America, so it only made sense to partner with a distinguished craft beer publication focused on great storytelling and promoting the craft beer industry in a positive manner. Join us Wednesday, October 5, at York Street Yards, 3833 Steele Street, Suite 1332, Denver, to sample a selection of award-winning NA beverages in a chill environment with food, activities and a place to relax. And we’ll be in great company with over 50 breweries distilleries and cideries from across the country! 10th Anniversary Stats:

  • 50+ Brewery Invitational
  • 140 beers for attendees to try, 1-ounce pours
  • Exclusive bottle share
  • 300 tickets sold
Great American Beer Festival logo for Sober October post

Great American Beer Festival
Date: Thursday, October 6, through Saturday, October 8, 2022
Are you heading to the Great American Beer Festival in Denver? Billed the biggest celebration of craft beer in the United States, GABF helps set the stage for popular styles and trends in craft beer for the upcoming year, including the exploding non-alcoholic category. And this year Partake Brewing Company is proud to be the official sponsor of the Designated Driver (DD) Lounge!

We’d love to walk you through a tasting at our Activation, located between the popular Karaoke Lounge and the Merchandise Tents near the food trucks. The DD Lounge is a space where those who choose not to drink can relax and unwind, with TVs, food, massage chairs and yes, a selection of non-alcoholic craft beer including Partake Pale, IPA, Blonde and Peach Gose. Wonder if anyone takes advantage? Festival organizers have sold over 500 DD tickets for the four sessions! We’re proud to have the opportunity to serve those who choose to partake in the festival without the hangover (and questionable photos) the next morning.

Great American Beer Festival Stats:

  • 500 breweries
  • 2000+ beers for attendees to try, 1-ounce pours
  • 10,000+ beers entered into GABF competition this year (including non-alcoholic)
  • 40,000+ attendees, with tickets sold out for all sessions except for Thursday
NBWA logo for Sober October post

National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) Annual Convention
Date: Sunday, October 9, through Wednesday, October 12, 2022
While Chicago is set up a little differently from Vegas last year, we know the National Beer Wholesalers Association’s Annual Convention is a must-attend event for those Distributors responsible for growing the beer category. Partake Brewing Company will be serving Partake IPA and Peach Gose at the Opening Night reception, as well as sampling attendees on the Pale, Blonde, Red, Dark and Hazy IPA on the tradeshow floor Monday.

National Beer Wholesalers Association Annual Convention Stats:

  • 120 exhibiting breweries and vendors
  • 1,800 attendees
  • 19 education seminars

Craft Beer Professionals Fall Virtual Conference
Date: Monday, October 17, through Wednesday, October 19
Craft Beer Professionals is a national network dedicated to the growth and betterment of the Craft Beer industry. CBP unifies and elevates the industry through educational content, peer to peer dialogue, and unique community events. Market Your Craft will be presenting Tuesday, October 18, at 4PM ET, a session titled, “What do you mean there’s no alcohol?! Sales and Marketing strategies for your non-alcoholic beer.” We’ll take a look at the estimated $6B non-alcoholic beer market in the United States and what your brewery can do to tap into that growth. Together we’ll review the fundamentals of an effective non-alcoholic promotional strategy with examples across social, digital, public relations, ecommerce and email. Presentation attendees will receive a complimentary copy of the 15-page guide, “Non-Alcoholic: What’s the Buzz About?”

See the full conference agenda and register at Craft Beer Professionals

Ontario Craft Brewers logo for Sober October post

Ontario Craft Brewers Conference
Date: Tuesday, October 25, through Wednesday, October 26
The Ontario Craft Brewers Conference is Canada’s largest craft brewing industry annual event and trade show. With hundreds of operating breweries, contract brewers and brewpubs in communities across the province, OCBC is the first opportunity for the industry to connect broadly, face-to-face and the ideal environment to facilitate collaboration and revitalization of the industry. The event gives attendees an opportunity to connect, share information and network with industry members, suppliers and stakeholders.

Market Your Craft will be presenting, “Storytelling: Share Your Superpower,” on Wednesday, October 26, at 11AM ET. We’ll help owners and managers deconstruct all the stories they’ve told themselves about their non/alcoholic brand, only to rebuild them in a way that lands with today’s customer in their target markets. Being open to the process and a critical review of their marketing efforts, owners and managers will make huge strides with their storytelling strategy. When your team has that kind of clarity, they are unstoppable champions for your brand!

Then at 1PM ET we’ll be moderating a panel discussion on social media titled, “Unlock Social Media for Your Brewery.” Sharing their experience and local insights will be Amy Breault, Brand Manager for Bench Brewery, and Merissa Vuylsteke, Marketing Manager for Left Field Brewery. Our panel will discuss strategies and tactics that have proven successful for engaging new and existing drinkers. Then we’ll set the stage for a deliberate social marketing strategy by defining the objectives, tone and personality of your messaging while organizing your content in a monthly posting calendar.

Ontario Craft Brewers Conference Stats:

  • 1,000+ attendees, including Canadian, US and Ontario craft brewery owners, operators, brewers, investors, government, industry champions
  • 140+ leading-edge industry suppliers to the brewing industry

See the full conference agenda and register at the Ontario Craft Brewers Conference

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