359 – Innovative Digital Strategies for Bourbon Marketing with Brandon Smith of Bardstown Bourbon Company
Gone are the days of paying for billboards, newspaper, and bench ads and bus stop. Everyone has the capability to access a world of information right in the palm of their hand. If you’re like me, you’re checking your email 50 times a day and getting hit with notifications across multiple social platforms and other apps that demand your attention. But as a bourbon brand, how do you capitalize on the digital space? Brandon Smith joins the show to talk about how he is building a digital strategy at Bardstown Bourbon Co. We talk about how to gather data and develop A/B testing to figure out which digital ads work. But we also talk about platforms and influencer engagement to encompass the realm of digital trends. So if you are a bourbon brand, here’s your chance to take a few notes.
- Above the Char with Fred Minnick (@fredminnick) talks about why rye whiskey labels are green
- Talk about your introduction into whiskey and led you into growing a popular instagram account @thedailydram
- Did you take on a big career change to get into bourbon?
- What was Bardstown Bourbon Co’s vision for a digital strategy?
- How do you create a story for your brand if you’re a new entrant into the market?
- How are you turn a story into a digital asset?
- How did you examine the data to determine who is tied to your brand?
- What have you found to be successful as engaging content?
- How do you decide how to follow a trend?
- How long do you have to react to a trend before it becomes stale?
- Is there more value in someone else creating content vs being done by the brand?
- Where do you place your bets with influencers based on followers?
- How do you measure success for a digital campaign?
- Support this podcast on Patreon
335 – Introducing The Bardstown Collection with Jim Beam, Heaven Hill, Log Still, Preservation, and Bardstown Bourbon Company
What happens when you bring 5 of the top distilleries together and have them each provide two of their best barrels? You get the Bardstown Collection. Jim Beam, Heaven Hill, Log Still, Preservation, and Bardstown Bourbon Company have come together along with the tourism side of Visit Bardstown to release 5 special edition bottles that will benefit the community of Bardstown. All proceeds will go to the Main Street Association, Hospitality, and First Responders. These exclusive expressions have a unified packaging featuring Bardstown imagery and the only difference is a small label with each brand logo at the bottom of the bottle. In this episode, we’re joined by Freddie Noe, Conor O’Driscoll, Lynne Dant, and Steve Nally to talk about the process of making this collection. These bottles will be released at each distillery starting on January 13th and the cost will range $159 – $249 per bottle. Get ready to collect the whole set! Visit BardstownCollection.com for more details and specific release times.
- Catoctin Creek has been honoring that tradition of small craft rye whisky since 2009. Learn more at CatoctinCreekDistilling.com.
- Smooth Ambler builds on the traditional roots of American whiskey in West Virginia. Visit SmoothAmbler.com to learn more.
- Wilderness Trail is Sweet Mash Kentucky Straight Bourbon and Rye Whiskey distilled, aged, and bottled in Danville, Kentucky. Learn more at WildernessTrailDistillery.com.
- You can now buy Barrell Craft Spirits products online and have them shipped right to your door. Visit BarrellBourbon.com and click Buy Now.
- Spirits of French Lick is delivering the finest hand crafted Bottled in Bond bourbons. Check out SpiritsofFrenchLick.com.
- Total Wine and More is wonderland for wine, spirits, and beer lovers! Explore more in store or online at TotalWine.com.
- Heaven Hill Distillery has been lifting America’s spirit since 1935. Check out educational resources and sign up for their newsletter at HeavenHillDistillery.com.
- This week’s Above the Char with Fred Minnick (@fredminnick) talks about your palate being off.
- Tell us about your role in this project.
- What was the process like for choosing the barrels for this project?
- What does this project mean for Bardstown?
- Talk about the charity aspect of this project.
- When are these bottles being released?
- Why aren’t more distilleries getting together to do these kinds of projects?
- What does this project mean to you?
- @jimbeamofficial @heavenhilldistillery @bardstownbourbonco @logstilldistillery @preservationdistillery
- Support this podcast on Patreon
On today’s show, we get to feature two great people at Bardstown Bourbon Company, Dan Callaway and Nick Smith. Bardstown Bourbon Company exploded on the scene as a destination hot spot for anyone visiting the trail and Dan was instrumental to the early success of creating a red carpet environment for anyone who visited. As whiskey production ramped up, Nick Smith brought his knowledge from working at Jim Beam to help customers create custom mash bills and guide them in the right direction to put a new spin on the distillation process that would be uniquely theirs. So next time you’re headed to Bardstown, don’t forget to make Bardstown Bourbon Company a must visit.
- This week’s Above the Char with Fred Minnick talks about bourbon branded credit cards.
- What made you decided to come work at Bardstown Bourbon Company?
- What was the original vision for Bardstown Bourbon Company and how has it changed?
- Are banana croquettes a real thing?
- What lessons did you learn coming from Jim Beam to Bardstown Bourbon Company?
- How do you accommodate so many different mash bills?
- How do you work together?
- Is there a baseline for the mash bills?
- Are there any limitations on the mash bills?
- How do you guide customers to different cooperages?
- Do you help brands with marketing and packaging?
- Can this be a tourist destination for brands that contract through you?
- Tell us about the Discovery Series.
- Talk about the vintage library.
- What is the timeline for the bottling facility?
- How much of the distillery process is automated?
- What’s a changeover?
- What is Pete’s Place?
- Tell us about the Kentucky Proud product.
- Follow @bbc_whiskeynick, @dannybardstown, @bardstownbourboncompany
239 – Large Scale Contract Distilling with Steve Nally and John Hargrove of Bardstown Bourbon Company
Today, we talk to one of the biggest up and coming distilleries in Bardstown…and that’s the Bardstown Bourbon Company. We covered the business side in a past episode, but this time we look at operations and the two guys responsible for filling thousands of barrels per year. Steve Nally and John Hargrove sit down with us to talk about their background in distillation. Spoiler alert, Steve Nally is kind of a big deal. We also touch on what the process is like for a customer to work with them as they choose a mash bill, yeast strain, barrel location in the rickhouse, and where they see the market in 5 years. If you are on the bourbon trail, be sure to stop at BBC for lunch and a dusty pour.
- Jim Beam Cheat Sheet: http://bourbonr.com/blog/jim-beam-distillery-production-cheat-sheet/
- This week’s Above the Char with Fred Minnick talks about Bolivia.
- What was your first taste of bourbon?
- How did you get into working in the bourbon and spirits industry?
- How was it going from Maker’s to a start up distillery?
- Do you have a formal education in science or did you learn on the job?
- How did they convince you to come to BBC?
- What was the initial BBC strategy?
- What is your distillery capacity?
- Did you see the need for contract distilling?
- Is it difficult to produce so many mash bills?
- Do clients have a mash bill in mind or do you help coach them?
- Walk us through the process.
- Can you pick your own yeast strain?
- Can you sample the yeast strains?
- Do you guide customers on wood?
- How long is your wait?
- How do you allocate floor levels in the warehouse?
- What’s the craziest demand from a customer?
- Is it more efficient to have a contract distiller?
- What are you distilling for BBC?
- Talk about the risk of experimenting with products.
- Where do you see bourbon in 3-5 years?
- Any plans for other spirits?
- Tell us about the decision to allow customers to customize the process.
- Do you bottle and help with packaging?
Some people thought it was crazy to build a business doing 100% contract distilling. David Mandell, Former President and CEO of Bardstown Bourbon Company, told us this back on Episode 019. Four years later, we catch up with him to see how the operation has tripled from its original plan. This podcast covers what it takes to be a client of Bardstown Bourbon Company and how they are making 40 different mash bills for them. From the business side, we talk about building a destination for visitors and what it takes to find the right talent pool and keep employee retention. We look into their recently launched bourbon line and what the future has in store for more collaborations.
- Barrell American Vatted Malt: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190827005179/en/Barrell-Craft-Spirits-Releases-First-Ever-American-Vatted
- NAWR post on 21 states violating the constitution for shipping laws: https://nawr.org/twenty-one-states-in-violation-of-constitution-after-tennessee-wine-supreme-court-case/
- Bardstown Bourbon Company’s new CEO: https://www.thespiritsbusiness.com/2019/09/bardstown-bourbon-co-names-new-ceo/
- Bardstown Bourbon Company new Visitor Experience: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/bardstown-bourbon-company-opens-immersive-visitors-center-experience-300914083.html
- This week’s Above the Char with Fred Minnick talks about glassware.
- What’s been going on since the last time you were on the podcast?
- What is Bardstown Bourbon Company?
- What kind of brands do you work with?
- What technology have you implemented in the distilling process?
- Talk about building Bottled & Bond Kitchen.
- How did you find the right staff?
- Do you see an end of investing into the business?
- Tell us about your innovation.
- How did you decide to get into this business?
- How many locations did you scout?
- What do you do for employee retention?
- Tell us about your bourbon.
- What’s the next phase for the Fusion line?
- What about your vintage whiskey?
- Where do you see the business going in the future?
019 – A New Idea To Large Contract Distillation at Bardstown Bourbon Company with David Mandell, CEO
David Mandell, CEO of the Bardstown Bourbon Company, talks about the beginning of one of the newest and largest distilleries to ever hit Bardstown, KY. We talk about the present and future of this up and coming distillery.
- David tell us about your background
- Tell us about the spirits you will be distilling
- Give us your bourbon story. What led you into the spirits business?
- Talk a little bit about the operation you are currently building
- What edge does this give you compared to Heaven Hill, Four Roses for outsourcing bourbon?
- What are you going to do with 37,000 square feet of space?
- We’re the first to break the news about Harrison-Smith House being a staple at the new distillery.
- What else can you fit inside this massive space?
- What’s the timeline to get the stills running?
- To be called a bourbon it needs to be aged for two years. So what’s your two year plan to fill the gap?
- What are the long term plans with that facility?
- What was the solidifying fact by choosing Bardstown as the home for this new distillery?
- What are the biggest hurdles you see as the biggest blockers for trying to get into the spirits industry?
- Tell us about Steve Nally and what he brings to possible micro-distillers wanting to expand their product lines
- Where are you exactly in Bardstown?
- Like Bardstown Bourbon on Facebook, Follow @btownbourbon on twitter