MicroBrewr 009: Getting Distributors to Sell More Of Your Beer and the Benefits of Canning w/ Tyson Starling

Canning Versus Bottling Beer and Getting Your Distributors to Sell More of Your Beer

In this podcast, I had a ton of fun talking with Tyson Starling from Atlantic Brewing Company.  Tyson started as a credit analyst and after having to foreclose on somebody, decided that this was not the career path for him.  Tyson switched careers to work as a sales rep for a beer distributor in Maine and then was approached to work on the day-to-day operations for Atlantic Brewing Company.  In this episode, we go into detail about the pros and cons on canning versus bottling beer and why Tyson would be canning if he could do it all over again.  Tyson also has some cheap and easy tips on how to get your distributors to sell more of you beer and the importance of branding for your brewery.

Topics that we covered:

  • Why working in a brewery and a bank are more similar than you’d think
  • The importance of picking a distributor since you’re locked in once you make your choice
  • Unique and cheap ways to get your distributor to help increase your beer sales
  • The scary truth about how long your beer can sit in a warehouse before making it to your customer
  • The power of consistency in all of your labeling or branding
  • How to use MicroStar to sell kegs out of state and not having to worry about having your keg returned
  • The pros and cons of canning versus bottling your beer and why canning may be better for your microbrewery

Here Are All the Great Resources Discussed in the Podcast

Microbrewery Canning Versus Bottling

Craft Beer Business – How to get in contact with Tyson

Atlantic Brewing Company

“So You Want To Open A Microbrewery Podcast” w/ Collin McDonnell – Talks about the real life of being a craft brewer

“Branding and Transforming Your Beer into Art” w/ Harvey Shepard – Recommendations on branding and labeling your beer

MicroStar Kegs

Keg Credit

Cask Canning Equipment

“Developing Your Brewery Business Plan” w/ Aaron Brodniak – Goes into the cost of starting a brewery

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I Need Your Help To Spread The Word

If you like this podcast on canning versus bottling beer and increasing your sales through distribution, I would really appreciate it if you would give me a rating in iTunes to help spread the word about the podcast.  All you need to do is search for MicroBrewr in the iTunes store or you can use link this link here (then just click “View in iTunes”).  If you’ve never given a rating in iTunes before, I put together these instructions to walk you through the 2 minute process.  Giving a rating in iTunes will continue to push the podcast up in the rankings which help get the podcast into the ears of more people.  Thanks in advance!

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Raise Money For Your Brewery

MicroBrewr 008: Raise Money For Your MicroBrewery Without Having to Give Away Any Ownership w/ CrowdBrewed

Raise Money For Your Microbrewery Using Crowdfunding

In this podcast I got to interview Mark Slattery from CrowdBrewed which is a crowdfunding platform targeting the craft beer industry.  While I have heard of crowdfunding campaigns on sites like Kickstarter, I still wasn’t sure on the details of how they worked.  Mark walks us through the process and details how you can raise money for your brewery without having to give up any ownership!  While crowdfunding can work really well for starting up a brewery, Mark also discusses how established breweries can use crowdfunding for expansions or if they want to offer a new beer line.  Besides raising money for your brewery, crowdfunding also has a great marketing aspect since your campaign will get attention and those that invest are going to be even more loyal fans in the future.  By the end of this podcast, you’ll know how crowdfunding campaigns work, how to avoid pitfalls of campaigns that have failed and if crowdfunding is right for you!

Some of the topics that we cover:

  • What exactly crowdfunding is and how it works
  • The difference between rewards-based crowdfunding and equity crowdfunding
  • What sets apart the successful crowdfunding campaign versus those that fail
  • Examples of the best performing rewards that you can offer in your campaign
  • The best time to do a crowdfunding campaign if you’re starting up a brewery
  • How established breweries can use crowdfunding for that upcoming expansion or product offering
  • The marketing value of a crowdfunding campaign
  • The next steps on what to do if you want to start up a crowdfunding campaign

Find Out More About CrowdBrewed and Links to Other Resources


CrowdBrewed Website

CrowdBrewed Twitter and Facebook Pages

Connect with Denver Beer Guy on Twitter

BrewDog – Scotland Brewery that Used Equity Crowdfunding To Raise Money

J Wakefield Brewery – Broke Craft Brewery Crowdfunding Record Raising $112,000

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Build Your Social Media Presence Before Starting Your Campaign

To help with those crowdfunding campaigns, you’ll want to already have a good social media following to get the word out once you start the campaign.  Since time and money is tight, I’ve put together an e-book with six free social media tools that you can use to build your presence online and get your beer into the hands of more people.  As my thanks for visiting MicroBrewr, simply click the button below and I’ll send you the e-book free to your email.


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MicroBrewr 007: So You Think You Want to Open a Microbrewery… w/ HenHouse Brewing

Have You Ever Thought that You’d Like to Open a Microbrewery?

Through connecting with the MicroBrewr community and doing the weekly podcast, I’ve been lucky to talk with so many amazing people who are looking to turn their dreams into a reality and open a microbrewery.  The thought of leaving the 9-5 and going on your own path is an adventure that sounds like a dream come true.  Being able to leave the office behind to brew and drink beer all day, what could be better?  Well, we don’t want to kill anybody’s dreams but there is a lot more work that comes when you open a microbrewery than just brewing and drinking beer.  In this podcast, we’ll go through the typical life of a brewer to try to give a good perspective on what to expect if you do take that next step to open a microbrewery.

Meet Collin From HenHouse Brewing Company

Collin McDonnell is one of the three founders of Henhouse Brewing Company.  HenHouse started selling beer two years ago and over that time have been raising money to quit their jobs to go at it full time.  One reason why I really wanted to talk to Collin is that he wrote a great article on the “real life” of working in the brewery where he was very transparent on the not so exciting parts of running the business day to day.  As we went through the podcast, you can tell that Collin’s focus on the details comes from a passion that HenHouse puts into their beer to make sure they are making a quality product that they can be proud of.

Here’s some of the topics that we’ll cover in the podcast:

  • The amount of data collection that is required to put out quality beer that tastes the same every time
  • How much cleaning is really required in the brewing process
  • The benefits of leasing space from another brewery (alternating proprietorship) instead of starting with your own equipment
  • The need to think about how your brewery will be different that others in the area
  • How to pick your partners to leverage their strengths when you open a microbrewery
  • Why maintaining great relationships with regulators needs to be a priority
  • The benefits of working at a brewery before you start your own
  • The power of a vision to keep you focused on the end goal

Here are the Links of Stuff We Talked About and Spots Where You Can Find Out More About HenHouse

HenHouse Brewing Company Facebook Page


HenHouse Twitter Page

Collin’s Article “So You Think You Want to Open a Brewery”

Petaluma Hills Brewing Company

Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB)

61 Brewers Speak Out: What I Wish I’d Known Before Starting a Brewery

An Ode to Beer Drinkers by Collin McDonnell

Beer Talks 2014 w/ Collin

21st Amendment

Beach Chalet

Drake’s Brewing Company

Your Free Audio Book

Are You Enjoying the MicroBrewr Podcast?

If you like this podcast on what it’s like to open a microbrewery, I would really appreciate it if you would give me a rating in iTunes to help spread the word about the podcast.  All you need to do is search for MicroBrewr in the iTunes store or you can use link this link here (then just click “View in iTunes”).  Giving a rating in iTunes will continue to push the podcast up in the rankings which help get the podcast into the ears of more people.  Thanks in advance!

Give the MicroBrewr Podcast a Review on iTunes

 You might also like:

MicroBrewr 022: Expanding to… India!, with Arbor Brewing Company Brewpub in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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Help keep MicroBrewr on the air. CLICK HERE for ways you can help.

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Brewery Business Plan

MicroBrewr 006: Developing Your Brewery Business Plan w/ Aaron Brodniak

Here’s the Podcast to Entertain You While Traveling to the CBC

The Craft Brewers Conference is here and I think that this podcast will be a great way to pass the time as you travel to Denver (if you’re not already there).  I’ve been asked by a number of people if I’ll be there this year and unfortunately I won’t be able to make it.  My wife is currently seven months pregnant with our first and its getting to be that time where she probably wouldn’t be too happy with me if I left for four days.  While I won’t be able to make it, I’ll be there in spirit and keep me updated on Twitter or Facebook on how it’s going.  If you’re enjoying the MicroBrewr podcast, make sure to spread the love at the CBC and tell your friends about it.  Have a beer for me and hope you have a great time!!

Developing Your Brewery Business Plan w/ Aaron Brodniak

This week, I am really excited to welcome Aaron Brodniak to the podcast.  Aaron Brodniak has worked in a number of different breweries and has held the titles of Head Brewer for a microbrewery and Regional Brewer for a chain of brewpubs. He has over 18 years of craft brewing experience and serves as a brewery consultant who assists with both start-up and operational brewery business plans, human resource plans, product development, marketing and so much more.  This week, we’ll focus on the different aspects you’ll need to take into account when developing your brewery business plan so get ready to take some notes on this one!

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Developing Brewery Business Plan

Meet Aaron Brodniak

Here are just some of the topics that we cover:

  • Where to start once you decide you want to start a brewery
  • Some free ways to do market research for your brewery
  • The trick on being able to get information from other busy brewers for your business plan
  • How to decide between a distribution brewery or a brewpub
  • Find out how building relationships is key for everything
  • Major factors to think about when sizing your brewery
  • The power of having a home brewing competitions at your brewery
  • Key differences of breweries that take off versus struggle
  • How a vision or end goal is important to the success of the brewery
  • The typical cost raw materials and equipment for the brewery business plan
  • I had about another 10 bullets points on what we covered since Aaron provides so much great info but figured I’d just let you listen

The Craft Beer Startup Workshop


If you liked what Aaron had to offer in the podcast, I recommend that you check out the Craft Brewery Startup Workshop II offered by Oregon State University. Refine your brewery vision online with fellow entrepreneurs and then travel to Portland, Oregon to work with consultants during a four-day workshop to fine-tune your craft brewery business plan. Also, if you have the best business plan at the end of the workshop, you will be offered a three-day internship with Ninkasi Brewing in Eugene. If you’re serious about starting up a brewery which will probably cost you $1 million and up, I’m sure that investing money in a great course like this will pay off in the long run.

Resources for Developing Your Brewery Business Plan

Here’s a list of the difference resources that Aaron covered. Also, I included some links on how to get in touch with Aaron if you’re looking for a consultant to help you out starting up your brewery.

Connect with Aaron on LinkedIn

Aaron’s Blog

Small Business Administration

U.S. Census

Department of Labor

Brewers Association

The New Brewer (Membership with the BA required) (Aaron’s username is malty1)

Brewers Association School Links


Northwest Beer and Cider Sessions, Oregon State

Breweries Mentioned in the Podcast:

Diamond Knot Brewery

Pyramid Breweries

Santa Barbara Brewing Company

Amnesia Brewing

Sirius Brewpub

Karbach Brewing

3Sheeps Brewery

North Coast Brewing Co

Bull City Brewery

New Belgium Brewing Co

J Wakefield Brewing

Henhouse Brewing

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Join the Community

Want to learn more?  To get updates on when new content comes out, make sure to connect with me by clicking the button below.  As my thank you for joining the community, I’ll send you the 6 Free Social Media Tools To Get People Talking About Your Beer e-book for free.


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Help keep MicroBrewr on the air. CLICK HERE for ways you can help.

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Building a Brewery

MicroBrewr 005: The Start of the Journey of Building a Brewery w/ Nathan Pierce

Grab a Beer and Join Us in the Journey of Starting a Brewery

Welcome to the 5th edition of the MicroBrewr podcast!  Due to the success and support I’ve seen for the previous podcast, I’ve dialed up the frequency now to weekly.  If you’re new to the podcast, I’m a craft beer fanatic who loves to hear about the journeys of those in the craft beer industry.  With the experiences of some amazing people, hopefully I can give back to this community to help inspire brewers to start a brewery or provide tips on what’s working right now for the lucky people who already run their own brewery.  Even if you’re not in these two camps, these guys and gals have some amazing experiences to share that hopefully can provide some entertainment to your daily commute or work out.

Meet Nathan Pierce Who Will Give Us a First Hand Look at Starting a Brewery

I originally got in touch with Nathan Pierce after starting MicroBrewr who is currently in the process of starting up a brewery.  Nathan worked at the air pollution control district in California before quitting his job to follow his dream and start a brewery a couple of months ago.  Nathan has been gracious to share his journey along the way to help out others that are thinking of starting a brewery and we’ll be coming back in future podcasts to catch up on progress.  In this podcast, you’ll get to ride along for the initial steps of the journey where Nathan is working to turn his dream into a reality.

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In this podcast we’ll cover:

  • Setting goals and how to stay focused on the end result
  • Transitioning to less structure without the 9-5 job
  • Productivity tips and some great ways to stay motivated
  • Where to go for creating a business plan
  • Selectively choosing what information you need to know along the process
  • Dealing with friends or family who don’t support your vision or want you to succeed
  • Following through on your dreams and telling as many people as you can about those dreams to keep you accountable

Here are links that we talked about during the podcast:

Entrepreneur on Fire PodcastStarting Brewery

Storyline Productivity Schedule

Beyond the To Do List

Brewers Association

Connect with Nathan on Twitter

Your Free Audio Book

Join the MicroBrewr Community

Like what you’ve heard and want to get updates on upcoming articles and podcasts?  Click the button below to sign up for the email list.  As my thank you for joining the Microbrewr community, I’ll send you a free copy of our e-book “6 Free Social Media Tools To Get Your Beer in the Hands of More People.”


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Support MicroBrewr

Help keep MicroBrewr on the air. CLICK HERE for ways you can help.

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