Five ways UK craft beer companies are leading the content marketing charge

Britain’s ale aficionados have never been so well served – but does your content hit the spot?

Britain’s beverage industry is celebrating the news that 520 breweries opened last year – a whopping 25% increase on the 2015 numbers.

Avant-garde recipes are just one element of this brewing boom. Craft beer luminaries are eclipsing their mass-producing foes with marketing techniques as experimental as their pumpkin-infused brews.

The humble combination of water, malted grains, hops and yeast has produced some heady beverages in the hands of these maverick innovators. Could content marketing wisdom really be their most potent product of all?


Although they eschew the label, Manchester-based Cloudwater is often touted as enthusiastic drivers of the beer world’s hype train. The brewery’s double IPAs are released on a monthly basis and fly off the shelves. They’re about to release their thirteenth iteration of the style having earned a slew of international awards for previous efforts.

Content that publicises itself by virtue of its own quality – for many content marketers, this never goes beyond being a high-minded ambition. But despite only just reaching their second birthday, Cloudwater’s products market themselves thanks to their reputation for excellence. Is your content doing the same?

Brand identity

It’s all very well creating a buzz around your content with devious tricks like clickbait and ill-conceived listicles (read more about how to get them right here) – but a strong brand identity is crucial for ensuring engaged followers and consistent conversions.

Beavertown, based in North London, offers an interesting craft beer parallel. Their website leaps off the page, they’re well known faces at live events around the country and the cans are (almost) as delightful to behold as the beer is to drink.

Establishing a familiar brand has helped Beavertown gain legions of devotees. Producing exciting and recognisable content can be one of the best ways of replicating this success in the marketing world – but only if it’s done correctly and consistently.


The value of publishing bold content to stand out from the crowd is – as anticipated by Progressive Content’s very own Dan Davey – picking up traction in content marketing circles.

For some craft brewers, controversy lies at the heart of their publicity efforts. From driving a tank down Camden High Street to brewing a 55% ABV beer and stuffing the bottles inside deceased stoats and squirrels, BrewDog has a long established reputation as the enfant terrible of the British beer scene.

Their boldness has, however, paid dividends, with Brewdog’s flagship Punk IPA the biggest selling craft beer in the UK. Controversy, used judiciously, goes a long way – content marketers should take note.


Content Desk has already unpicked the advantages of producing local content. Technology continues to open up the world to consumers, but has also heightened demands for ultra-personalised content.

Breweries like Buxton and Brighton Bier have put their local roots at the heart of their brands. Activity in their respective communities, including sponsorship of a local football team in the latter case, has provided a springboard for wider success.

Likewise, local content’s potential is an essential trend to be aware of in the coming years as consumer demands change and content personalisation gathers pace.

Clear and concise

The one rule of content that is more important, and yet more neglected, than any other? Keep it simple.

Here too the UK’s burgeoning craft breweries are leading by example. Brew by Numbers and The Kernel, both hailing from South London, rely on a modest internet presence and minimalistic labelling to market their produce. Yet their beers speak for themselves, with both brewers named in RateBeer’s 2017 global top 100.

Don’t be dragged down by flowery language and gratuitous gimmicks – if your content isn’t doing its job, it will soon fall flatter than a forgotten pint.

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