Alice George
Shawn Decker and Cesar Marron are the principal owners of Sketchbook and their wives, Alice George and Amy Wilkinson, are active business partners.

Today we will be talking to Alice George. Alice is a writer, consultant & teacher. She published her first book of poetry titled “This Must Be The Place” in fall of 2008. As a visual artist, Alice creates, exhibits and sells her work out of her Evanston studio. She is active in service to Chicago-area nonprofits including the Main- Dempster Mile. Alice handles a lot of the marketing activities for Sketchbook.

“I always say that Shawn and Cesar made the mistake of drinking and dreaming.”

Marketing The Brew Case History

Sketchbook Brewing’s Email Marketing Program

Sharing the Sketchbook Story

“From the very beginning I had a certain amount of confidence that people were interested in the (Sketchbook) story. That people weren’t just interested in the beer but they were interested in the story.”

Keep a rounded story. Give both news about the beer and news about the people.

A tone of fun and family.

“We were operating out of the alley. The name of our popular ipa Orange Door IPA comes because we just happened to not only find a great building, but a building with a vibrantly painted orange door. So we just kind of took that branding as a gift!”

Alice’s Content Ideas

  • Telling stories about what the next batch will be
  • Pictures of getting brewing equipment into the brewery
  • The visual story of building and opening the tap room
  • Some of it’s just promotion: selling beer and getting people to events
  • We have this whole wonderful posse of people out there looking for ideas and suggesting things
  • Meet the crew by introducing new employees
  • A picture of the Coaster of the Week (hand drawn on back of coaster by customers done in the tap room with colored pencils)

Alice’s Content Tips

  • Use dynamic content – they know there will be something new
  • Images help
  • Don’t deluge them – one email a week
  • Use a tone of sharing and story telling
Coaster Sketches
Coaster Sketches

Sketchbook’s Email Results

Open rates on total list of 2000: 40 – 42%
Open rates on 400 to 420 members: 70- 80%

“It is really interesting too, the whole balance between Facebook and email and finding it so interesting how often those audiences don’t overlap. We have both and I have people who never open their email and get everything from Facebook and vice versa. It reinforces the need to use both engines along with Instagram.”
Sketchbook Brewing Company Email
Sketchbook Brewing Company Email
Sketchbook Brewing Company Email

Email Service Provider Alice mentioned:

Email Service Providers Steve mentioned:

An Article From The Brewer Magazine: Creating a Strong Email List for Your Brewery

Strapped for Time?

When push comes to shove, do you feel robbed of doing your best work by competing priorities?

Find 3 tried-and-true routines have helped breweries juggle digital marketing with all the other tasks that need your attention.

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Promote the Brew’s Clothing Styles and Design Workshop for Fall/Winter 2018


July 18, 2018

at Lakefront Brewery from 8:30 to 11:30am

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