A decade ago, virtually nobody in the U.S knew what a “sipping tequila” was or would ever consider a blanco to be worthy of such a moniker. The came Casa Dragones, a small batch Tequila producer from San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. They were one of the first to break out of the usually perception of tequila as a mixer for margaritas or a shot with lime and salt. Co-founded in 2009 by Bob Pittman, a former AOL Time Warner COO and a founder of MTV and Pilot Group, and CEO Bertha González Nieves, Casa Dragones is made with meticulous attention to detail and a commitment to perfecting this one style of limited edition sipping tequila only. As they entered the U.S. market, they needed access to the most influential gatekeepers and a way to communicate their unique message. We were tasked with helping to put the spirit in front of the right people.
As with other hard beverages, the key to customer adoption is trial. In addition, they needed what were essentially key endorsements from those that held the attention of consumers. We implemented a few programs to accomplish these goal.
- We organized an event hosted by Karen MacNeil, one of America’s emminent wine & spirits educators and author. She was joined by Berth Gonzalez Nieves, co-founder and CEO od Casa Dragones, and the first woman to be recognized as “Maestra Tequilera” by the Adacmia Mexicana de Catadores de Tequila.
- Casa Dragones was the exclusive tequila poured at the sixth annual Great Chefs Dinner in Bridgehampton, New York, where guests including Richard Gere, Carrie Lowell, Jon Bon Jovi and Star Jones enjoyed dishes from celebrated chefs Tom Colicchio (Craft, Colicchio & Sons) Laurent Tourondel (Brasserie Ruhlmann), Marc Meyer (Cookshop, Five Points, Hundred Acres) and Eric Ripert of The New York Times four-star restaurant Le Bernardin.
- We set up and managed meetings with key media interested in writing about the product.
- We hosted an event with half-a-dozen key Master Sommeliers and Master of Wine to gather their impressions and seek their endorsements.
- We developed their press kit and pitching materials
The Karen MacNeil event was a hit, with many trade and media attendees learning about the brand. In addition, we were able to secure steady coverage, with some major media successes, the most significant of those being Forbes, TIME, Robb Report, Bloomberg, and Oprah.