To celebrate national “IPA Day,” which fell on Aug. 5 this year, Heineken’s Lagunitas Brewing Company tapped Tarrytown, N.Y.-based influencer marketing company Ripple Street to recruit consumer influencers to host beer-tasting house parties.
Available to residents of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and the surrounding areas, Ripple Street solicited applications from its community of consumers interested in hosting a Lagunitas house party with friends, from June 16-July 12. Party hosts were selected on July 13. (In California, residents were selected via a sweepstakes running June 16 through July 12.)
From July 20-30, 350 entrants out of the more than 4,000 received an exclusive “Party Pack,” comprising a $60 gift card as well as Lagunitas IPA Day T-shirts, bottle openers and other branded swag for their house party and guests. From July 31 through August 15, selected entrants were asked to try and share the brand’s “hop-forward beers” and products with a group of friends and via social media using the hashtag #LagunitasParty.
This isn’t the first time Ripple Street has helped brands and retailers leverage consumer feedback through experiential marketing and events with friends. In 2020, Tata Consumer Products' Eight O'Clock Coffee (EOC) teamed up with the influencer marketing company for a programencouraging ShopRite shoppers to "be your own barista” at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. EOC enlisted Ripple Street to host some 400 parties at consumer homes to shine a spotlight on the brand’s Barista Blends, a line of flavored coffee the brand launched in 2019.
In other activity related to IPA Day this year, Lagunitas additionally teamed up with media communications and services agency Canvas Worldwide to launch a partnership with social platform Reddit. The campaign included beer-focused illustrative posts beginning in June, an “Ask Me Anything” conversation with “Brewmonster” Jeremy Marshall on Aug. 5, and a special one-off beer inspired by Redditor comments introduced on the micro-holiday for a limited time at Lagunitas Tap Rooms.