While talking with some business school friends, Alexis Beechen, ’15BUS, had a revelation — the vast majority of her peers couldn’t name a single wine company, let alone relate to one. With this in mind, she founded The Drop, a new kind of wine brand that seeks to catapult a decidedly dated industry into 21st century.
Thanks to her years of advertising experience, including her work on the “Most Interesting Man in the World” campaign for Dos Equis beer, Beechen knew a thing or two about how to market alcoholic products in unique and creative ways. Getting the company off the ground, however, proved a bit more challenging. New entrants to the alcoholic beverages market must overcome a bevy of roadblocks, designed specifically to protect the industry’s established elite. Namely, before being able to market to consumers, brands must convince distributors and retailers that their product will fly off the shelves.
However, Beechen came up with an innovative solution in order to get around this issue — she started an Instagram account (“That Rosé Life”) a full year before launching her initial product, both to test out the company’s brand voice, and to build a highly engaged and motivated audience. She also focused on partnering with events and other brands that would appeal to The Drop’s target customers, such as Camp Rosé All Day and Food Loves Tech. Of course, all of this served to supplement tried and true methods, such as wine tastings in neighborhood shots, earned media placements in key publications, and building a dedicated team that was willing to hit the ground and spread the word. Because of the attention her brand had already received, she was able to pick up six distributors within the first nine weeks of launching.
And this initial momentum isn’t showing any sign of slowing down — The Drop’s canned rosé is available in states that account for 50% of the U.S. population, including New York and California. Moreover, considering that The Drop has a 75% reorder rate among its current retailers, it’s safe to say that canned wine isn’t just another passing fad.
So what’s next for Beechen and The Drop? In the short-term, she and her team are working on a delicious, new red blend that will likely debut sometime this fall. But as far as the big picture is concerned, Beechan says, “the sky’s the limit.” Her ultimate goal is to leverage innovation, technology, and outside-the-box thinking in order to both redefine and reinvigorate the future of wine in America, and across the globe.
To purchase The Drop Wine, visit the website, TheDropWine.com!