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Megan Prangley
by Megan Prangley
on November 3, 2016

If you live in Grand Rapids, then you already know that we take beer pretty seriously around here. With over 40 breweries and multiple awards like "Beer City USA," Grand Rapids is a mecca for craft beer enthusiasts and curious tourists who are looking for the best brews available. It also happens to be the city that ManoByte proudly calls home. 

With seasonal ales coming out left and right (Verdun, Mosaic Promise, and the Grand Pumpkin to name a few), welcoming the arrival of Fall means our team began to wonder, how can craft beer partner with inbound marketing? The answer is more than you would expect, and yes this blog may have been written with a great beer in my hand, so be prepared for beer puns whenever possible.

Good Things Take Time

Just like a well-crafted beer, inbound marketing success doesn't happen in a day. The process, especially if it includes a redesigned lead-generating website, can take about 15 months or so before a client sees clear ROI. The time required to run an inbound campaign isn't a bad thing. Just like it takes time for yeast, malt, and hops to work their magic in beer, it takes time to generate leads with even the most successful inbound "recipe." The lesson is to be patient; a great glass of beer takes time, quality ingredients, and expert handling - just like a successful inbound strategy.  

Best Practices Exist for a Reason

Although every brewery in Grand Rapids is unique, they all have a history rich and code of values that guides them. Some put extra effort into charitable giving like The Mitten Brewing Company, others focus on sustainability like GRBC, and many place importance on brewing with Michigan-grown ingredients. Similarly, at ManoByte, we have a code of ethics and best practices that are passed on to each new employee. While we would never suggest limiting your creativity, frankly there's a right way and a wrong way to do things with inbound, just like with beer. If you don't mix the "ingredients" in the right order, you may not see ROI from an inbound campaign.  Luckily, the experts at ManoByte know the fundamental do's and don'ts from hours of studying and acquiring HubSpot certifications. Moral of the story: inbound marketing has clear best practices just like Grand Rapids beer.

Get Creative or Get Going  

The breweries in Grand Rapids didn't get to where they are today because they were ordinary. With taste combinations that surprise and delight customers, these breweries continue to stand out. From the sweet taste of Rubeus at Founders to the John Baller Brown at GRBC with hints of toffee and caramel, the creativity in Michigan's craft beers never ceases to amaze. No matter the pallet, there's a beer for them, and new releases happen all the time to continue to entice regular visitors. Just like with inbound, these breweries are always thinking of the next big thing, as to not remain complacent on their current success. Companies need to strive to be more creative every day with their marketing strategies, allowing themselves to look outside-the-box to solve problems and connect with their target audience. 

Check This Our Awesome Video Highlighting Beer City Metal Works & Construction and Beer City Culture: 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Wistia video thumbnail - Beer Community
 
 
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It Takes a Team 

If you look at the "Careers" or "About Us" page on the breweries of GR you will see it takes much more than one person to achieve their success. There are many people invested in every step of creation and distribution, from waitstaff to accounting, all are invested in the success of a brewery. A successful inbound campaign is hard to run on your own, which is why the ManoByte Team boasts experts in every area of inbound. We have an in-house video team, designers, content creators, and everything else necessary to execute a thriving campaign. Most of us have multiple HubSpot certifications and have commanding expertise in our area. Just like a brewery, a successful inbound marketing campaign is hard to run alone; it takes a team of committed and passionate individuals to "bottle" success. 

Did you make a list of the seasonal beer you have to try? Now, get some co-workers together for a cold glass and a good conversation about your marketing efforts. Remember if you're feeling overwhelmed, our awesome blog, free resources, and expert team are always here to help!

Man, writing this blog made me thirsty. I think I'll head down to HopCat now. Cheers!

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