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Craft beer pioneer, Bridge Road Brewers harnessed the power of print and digital connection to achieve a Top 5 ranking in the coveted GABS Hottest 100 Craft Beer Poll.

Connect to engage: Print and digital
Connect to engage: Print and digital

The award-winning brewery used a printed QR code on the side of its Beechwood Pale Ale cans to create a connected experience, and encourage votes in the Poll, the first time it has used a QR code in a targeted campaign. The cans were printed by East Coast Printing.

Bridge Road Brewers says that by integrating dynamic QR codes on its can, cases, bar menus, t-shirts, posters and more, it has transformed its physical, owned assets into a digital media channel for immersive digital experiences, “directly engaging consumers, and fostering a deeper connection with the brand.”

Nathan Fenton, marketing manager at Bridge Road Brewers, said, “Prior to Covid only 17 per cent of the population knew what a QR code was. Now everyone knows what they are and how to use them.

“They are an excellent way of connecting with our customers, especially when they are having a beer, we have created an interactive engaging experience for them, through the QR code and their mobile phone.”

The campaign was conceptualised by Bridge Road Brewers, which partnered with consumer engagement platform Cellr to introduce the concept of "connected experiences" to the Australian craft beer sector.

Head of Growth at Cellr, Daniel Hill, said, “Using Cellr's platform, we delivered an engaging and fun experience for Bridge Road's customers.

“We were then able to leverage real-time data, enhancing the user journey, encouraging deeper engagement with the campaign, and effectively increasing click-through rates.”

Hill says Cellr enhanced the user journey, encouraged deeper engagement with the campaign, and effectively increased click-through rates to the GABS voting page. This iterative process of monitoring, analysing, and refining early in the campaign was crucial for maximising campaign effectiveness.

“Beechworth Pale Ale’s top five position in the GABS Hottest 100 Craft Beers has been the best gift we could have received for the 18th year of brewing our flagship beer. We wanted to deliver something special for this campaign, partnering with Cellr allowed us to engage customers in a fun and creative way as they consume the product both in-venue and at home,” said Fenton.

“The professionalism of the Cellr team and platform allowed us to deliver an experience that captured the imagination of our consumers, helping deliver the equal-best result we’ve ever had in the history of the Hottest 100 Count.”

This achievement celebrates the second time Bridge Road Brewers have secured a top-five result in the countdown and the 16th time it's featured in the top 100, a testament to its commitment to innovation and excellence.

The brewery's strategic use of technology sets a new standard in the craft beer industry, demonstrating the potential of connected product technology and cloud platforms like Cellr in enhancing brand engagement and driving successful outcomes.

Hill says Cellr is seeing a noticeable increase in the adoption of connected consumer experiences, which is being driven by consumer demands.

“Today's modern, 'connected' consumers demand trust, transparency, and immersive experiences that elevate the quality of a brand's product or service. They seek personalised interactions, sustainability initiatives that align with their values, and a guarantee of quality and veracity,” Hill said.

For brands looking to meet these demands, the rewards of data analytics for deeper consumer insights cannot be overstated, according to Hill.

The adoption of this technology allows brands to innovate in meeting these demands, offering a significant advantage through the real-time data generated from digital interactions, which, in turn, informs strategic decision-making and enhances consumer engagement.

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