It’s been a year and a half since we hit the market with cans, and things have been going well. We’ve risen up the IRI charts (basically, the Billboard Music Charts of Beer) in San Antonio and our Helles, IPA and Seasonal are all in the top 5 in the Lager, IPA and Seasonal Categories, respectively, for craft brands in San Antonio stores. That’s quite an accomplishment!
However, we did get some feedback from our fans over the last 18 months or so about certain design elements that may be holding us back. You told us that the cans were too dark (and indeed, they were very heavy on black ink) and that there was no real brand cohesiveness on the cans that screamed FREETAIL when you were holding it. On that second point, we actually went and studied our cans and found that one of them had six (!!!!!) different versions of our logo on one can! SIX!!!
While we were getting these feedback, we also had the unfortunate circumstance last fall of our can supplier increasing their minimum orders to something beyond where we felt comfortable, so we were left to find a new supplier. We turned this into a positive and used the occasion of switching can suppliers to revamp our can design. So off to work went our in house graphic designer, Alicia Spence. After a ton of internal meetings, plenty of mock ups (seriously, a lot of them), and help from Anderson Marketing Group (who has built our last two websites) in putting together some focus groups, we came up with the design you see in the video above.
We wanted a can with a cleaner, fresher look that conveyed our personality but also had consistency so that if you were holding a can at a party it would be obvious you were holding a Freetail beer. Cans are an amazing medium because they provide the opportunity for a 360 degree design. At the same time, cans are also a challenge because of the process that goes into making printed cans. You are limited on the number of colors and a lot of skill goes into finding the right opacities and color combos to make it seem like you have more colors than you really do. In that regard, Alicia deserves tons of kudos for such an awesome job well done!
We will be rolling these cans out first in the San Antonio market, and then tackling the rest of our distribution territory one by one. We expect this to take most of May and June to make the conversion. Excited about seeing the new cans? Here is how you can help: drink up as many of the old ones as possible!
As I often do, I want to thank all of you for your support of Freetail over the years and allowing us to continue living this crazy dream of operating a successful brewery in San Antonio. When we opened in 2008, a lot of people thought we were crazy because our hometown never really supported breweries in the past and only Blue Star had been able to survive. Since then, we’ve gone from being only the 2nd brewery in SA to now being two of many! Thanks again and keep drinking SA made beer!