For distributors, crate shipping might not just be a way to get a product to market; it may also
be a way of promoting the product along the way. That’s the lesson from Budweiser’s classic
wooden crate marketing gimmick, which was covered recently by AdWeek.
The article itself seems pretty cynical, given its suggestion that this is designed to appeal solely
to “hipsters.” But you don’t have to be motivated by irony to see something attractive in the
classic Budweiser wooden crates carefully packed with two pilsner glasses and 18 beers bearing
Budweiser’s crate shipping project is sending 10,000 of these sets to stores across the country.
If the reception is good, we can easily imagine this becoming the next step in the growth of
subscription-based services like those we’ve mentioned before. Currently, such services just put
a handful of curated items into moving boxes, but for fragile items and companies with more
resources at their disposal, crate shipping might be a cool way of enticing the customer to buy
directly – and repeatedly – from the company.
But if anyone is planning to do this with beer and other breakables, make sure to contract with
the best shipping service in your area in order to do this right. In Los Angeles and along much of
the West Coast, that would definitely mean working with Box Brothers.