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Babson Marketers Tap Harpoon For Guerilla Marketing Insight

Most football fans know they won’t see commercials for Harpoon Brewery on Sunday afternoons.  To become one of the most popular craft beer brands in the Northeast, the company took another route, said Charles Storey, Senior VP of Marketing at Harpoon Brewery.

Meeting with about three dozen MBA candidates at an event hosted by the Babson Marketing Club at the Bottom Line Lounge, Storey shared his experiences with guerilla marketing on Tuesday night.

Because Harpoon has a fraction of the marketing budget held by Anheuser Busch, MillerCoors, or even the Boston Beer Company, Storey said his company’s marketing efforts are geared toward the personal to boost loyalty and produce sales. As a result, the company eschews traditional media and takes an old-school approach to guerilla marketing. The company does its best marketing through word-of-mouth.  Harpoon hosts beer festivals and sponsors events (including road races) in order to appeal to “alpha” customers that will spread the word about Harpoon to friends.

Best known for its signature Harpoon IPA, and other seasonal varieties, Harpoon has a proud tradition of innovating new brews, like the Island Creek Oyster Stout, to stay fresh and appeal to beer connoisseurs.

“We’re a beer company owned by beer lovers, “ Storey said. “I think that works well for us.”

– By Andrew Lightman M’11