Cask Report research shows that 55% of those who drink real ale drink it every week. And cask ale drinkers visit pubs more often and spend more money while they’re there. “If nothing else persuades you to get involved with Cask Ale Week, these facts most certainly should,” says industry expert Paul Nunny to brewers, licensees and pub operators.”
Additionally, the Report says 80% of drinkers would like to go to beer tastings and 65% to beer festivals during Cask Ale Week.
“The question is whether the nation’s breweries and pubs can fulfil this huge demand during the celebratory 11 day ‘Week’, “says Paul. “It’s up to everyone in the trade who a vested interest in cask ale to step up to the mark and make sure we’re giving pub goers what they want.
“It’s not rocket science to organise a beer tasting, open the brewery, or put on a promotion- but it does have a really positive impact on sales and reputation.
“The great thing about Cask Ale Week is that it’s flexible. Licensees and brewers can use it in the way that best suits their businesses.”
Ten reasons why more breweries and pubs than ever are getting involved in Cask Ale Week…
- Promote beer in general and their beers in particular
- Reward loyal drinkers
- Introduce new drinkers to cask
- Get more people into the pub
- Get customers to visit more often (65% of drinkers say they visit the pub more often during Cask Ale Week)
- Be a part the craft revolution (most cask ale is craft beer!)
- It’s free, easy to register and there are no rules
- Show appreciation for their local community
- Build reputation as cask hero
- Sell more cask beer!
Breweries: Tap into the 80% of drinkers who are interested in beer tastings during Cask Ale Week, and the 65% who’d like to go to a beer festival. Why not host a beer festival at your brewery? Throw open your gates and offer drinkers the chance to see brewing in action! Offer tours and tastings and give people the chance to taste the beers straight from the cask.
Brew a special Cask Ale Week beer. Look into making it a collaborative brew with a Beer Writer, local journalist or chef – indeed anyone who enhances your opportunity for PR activity…
Pubs and Pub Companies
Get your brewery suppliers to support you with tutored tastings and special offers. Use third pint tasters, beer and food menus, ‘introduce a friend’ promotions, or whatever works for you.
Remember, you don’t have to come up with something new, you can just put an existing event under the umbrella of Cask Ale Week. That should help with appeal to consumers (ie making them feel they are taking part in something, and giving them an excuse to join in) as well as with PR.
2015 Cask Ale Week Pub Quiz
If your pub does quizzes, this is a no-brainer. Putting on a quiz all about pubs and beer should appeal to current audiences – and attract in newcomers. There’s no need to spend time on questions: just visit http://caskaleweek.co.uk/info-media/pub-quiz/ and ask for ours. They are there for you on a plate. Make sure to package it up as a Cask Ale Week activity (there’s a Cask Ale Week Quiz logo on the website). And ensure that the patter on the day helps people feel they are part of the countrywide celebration of Britain’s national drink.
Top 6 things to remember when you’re organising your Cask Ale Week activity:
- Keep the focus on cask ale – but using craft to help market it if that helps with your audience (“Most cask ale is craft beer” as Cask Report author Pete Brown says)
- Use the Cask Ale Week logo
- Submit event details to http://caskaleweek.co.uk/add-event/ Events can be searched by region so make sure yours is on there!
- Post event info to the Cask Ale Week Facebook page
- Tweet @caskaleweek or #caskaleweek, and get your customers to do the same
- Get in touch with your local press/media to maximise PR opportunities.
“If your business in any way relies on cask ale, make sure you make the most of Cask Ale Week. It’s 24th September – 4th October. It’d be crazy not to!” says Paul.
CASE STUDY/QUOTES FROM 2014
Founder Charlie McVeigh reported an impressive increase in sales of almost 40% during Cask Ale Week 2014. The pubs ran a “Give us our Daily Cask” campaign, with all cask ales at £2.75 for the Week (pretty low for London!). There were promotional materials, but managers also made extensive use of social media.
James Daley, General Manager of the Draft House Northcote says “Cask Ale Week was a great success for us. We already have a regular (and very socially diverse) cask ale customer base, so you’d have thought it would be hard to increase cask sales. But it actually achieved a fantastic uplift in sales.
“The campaign increased visits by regulars – and got them interested in experimenting. And the “Give us our Daily Cask” campaign proved popular with everyone – definitely helping convert some new people to cask. That’s men and women of all ages 20-80! With a selection of ales from porter to pale, and amber to blonde, there was something to suit all palates. At £2.75 a pint, people were keen to experiment – and they’re still coming back for more even now the Week is over!”
“Our business revolves around cask ale, so it makes perfect sense to use Cask Ale Week to promote our brands and brewery – at the same time as supporting pubs”, says Darren Batten, Head Brewer at Palmers Brewery. “Meeting our customers and having a beer with them is brilliant: the more people who can see and share our passion for real ale the better.”
- Pub quiz throughout their tied estate (55 pubs)
- CAW menus
- Brewery Open Day Saturday 27th September giving away over 50 free of charge brewery tours
- Sampling over 27 gallons of beer
- Tastings on the Palmers Beer Bus
- Baking with Palmers Tally Ho ale and working with local supplier ‘Denhey to serve bacon rolls
- Be-spoke CAW logoed t-shirts
- Engaging local pubs and staff free of charge to support in service
- Over 60 cyclists took part in a fun ride taking in 8 Palmers pubs
BUTCOMBE BREWERY has been opening up the brewery to the public on a Saturday in September for several years.
“The festival started off as a way of showing gratitude to our village for its support,” says Tom Newell of Butcombe Brewery.
“While it still is a thank you to the local community, it now sits under the Cask Ale Week banner and people flock from far and wide.
“It’s satisfying to see so many people enjoying Britain’s national drink. As a way of rewarding our loyal drinkers and encouraging new people to try our beers, it works perfectly. It’s definitely the best piece of PR activity we do each year.”
JUST SOME OF THE 2015 ACTIVITY
Punch Taverns – Free pint promotion with national press
Punch Taverns are once again supporting Cask Ale Week – 24th Sept to 4th October 2015 with a Free Pint promotion giving UK drinkers the chance to enjoy a Free Pint of cask ale in nominated Punch Tavern pubs. The promotion runs from Thursday 24th Sept to Sunday 4th October (midnight).
Members of the public will be able to claim a free pint of Cask Ale by using their smartphone
The promotion objective is to increase footfall into pubs and support a national promotional campaign supporting Britain’s national drinks – Cask Ale! The promotion ran in 2014 with strong licensee feedback
- 44% of licensees stated that they saw an increase in trade during the Week
- 69% of licensees stated the promotion attracted new customers into the pub
- 46% of licensees stated those using the Free Pint voucher stayed for additional drinks or food
- 14% of licensees stated that new customers have since returned since using the promotion
The promotion uses a mobile phone app so no printed vouchers.
Enterprise Inns are encouraging and supporting their pubs with deals and ideas including free Cask Ale Week POS kits
Spirit Pub Company are encouraging and supporting their pubs with Beer Festival POS kits and product deals.
Nicholsons From 18th September to 4th October to celebrate the start of the World Cup and National Cask Ale Week, Nicholson’s Pubs across the country will play host to the Nicholson’s World Cup Beer Festival.
The event will feature a selection of exclusive beers, including those specially created by brewers in a unique, improvised brewing session that took place earlier in the year.
In addition to these exciting exclusive beers, Nicholson’s will be serving up a further 6 cask ales that have yet to grace their 80 historic pubs up and down the UK.
Anyone downloading or using the Nicholsons’s Hop Circle App during the festival will get a free pint at the start of the festivities.
Everards: Following the success of last year’s event, Everards are offering another chance to win tickets to an exclusive ‘Beer with the Boys’ night with some of Leicester Tigers and Leicester Riders top players at The Old Horse pub, London Road Leicester. Everards’ resident beer king Mark Tetlow will be hosting the event guiding the through the history of beer and the brewing process with some fun anecdotes on the way, followed by and intimate Q&A with the players. The exclusive event which begins at 7pm promises to be an interesting, informative and fun night with a selection of ales and home cooked food from the Old Horse. You’ll also receive a FREE goody bag. To win a place for you and a friend at this fantastic event simply click here to enter. Competition link: http://www.everards.co.uk/win-tickets-beer-boys/
Wadworth’s ‘Passport to Prizes’ – consumers visit a number of nominated Wadworth pubs during the Week collecting a stamp each time they buy their first pint of beer in a different pub. These stamps then add up and they can win prizes depending on the number of stamps/pubs visited that are redeemed.
After success of 2014 – same again for 2015!! Win a Cask Ale Week tutored tasting in the iconic Caledonian Brewery! Tutored Tasting with legendary Beer Sommelier Craig ‘Shakey’ Stevens for 200 lucky consumers who win a seat at a Pie and Pint “Celebration of Cask Beer’ event at the Brewery.
Hall and Woodhouse
Annual Beer Festival at the Brewery – proceeds to charity!