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Espresso of Innovation: The Creative Beer Manifesto


By Martin Talks, president, digital, Draftfcb UK 


Hello and welcome to this week's Espresso of Innovation; the hottest news and strongest stories from the world of creativity and technology filtered into a quick shot of inspiration. This week, bottoms up!
If you're struggling to come up with an innovative idea, then this espresso is here to help. My advice is simple. Go to the pub and buy a pint or two. Yes, it's official; an alcoholic drink or two does make you more creative, so sayssomeresearchfrom The Drum.
So that should make the beer industry one of the most creative industries around shouldn’t it? That does indeed seem to be the case. Recently there have been some interesting uses of creative technology from beer brands:At Milan Design Week earlier this year, Heineken unveiled its latest innovation: theIgnite bottle that reacts when being toasted with and synchronises with the music in a nightclub and flashes to match the beat.Budweiser Brazil has created theBuddy Cup, "a cup integrated with Facebook," that makes you Facebook friends with someone when you clink glasses.
And beer drinking fans, they should be creative types too. The beer industry thinks so and is beginning to crowdsource ideas. Heineken has created itsIdeas Brewery: an "open innovation platform" to encourage fans to share ideas and feedback. It has also reached out to independent designers to develop marketing initiatives for its global "Open Your World" marketing strategy. One output has been apop-up nightclub in Milan.
And innovation is not just around drinking occasion, but R&D itself. Samuel Adams in the US has gone one step further with itsCrowd Craft Project which involves consumers in helping determine different flavour profiles to create a collaborative ale.
Indeed, it may well be digital technologies will disrupt the big beer business model as it has done to other industries. Craft beer is a growing movement: it has now gained 10% of the total beer sales and is expected to be a $17 bn industry by 2017. There’s even a crowd funding platform for craft beers:Craft Fund.
Further innovations could help boost the economy and reverse the fall of UK pub beer sales, whichdropped by 50 million pints in Q1 this year according to the British Beer & Pub Association.
So I implore you for the sake of our creative industry, for the sake of our country and, actually, for thesake of the world, drink more beer.  And, let’s face it, the world would be a duller place without those greatbeer ads.
Right, I’m off to the pub…