< Creative That Works

Building a multi-million dollar brand through authentic storytelling.

Original 16 Beer Packaging

Great Western Brewing – Original 16

The Challenge

Successfully launch a new premium beer in a crowded market and quickly establish a foothold in new geographic territories that would create a halo effect for other portfolio brands, all with a fraction of the budgets of our entrenched national brand competitors.

Original 16 Packaging Close Up
Original 16 Draught Tap Design

The Solution

Over 30 years ago, 16 employees banded together, risked everything, and bought the brewery they worked at, which was about to be shuttered by a large national brewer.

We leveraged that David vs Goliath story to create a brand that paid homage to the original founders of the brewery, resonated with the target demographic, and instilled a sense of renewed pride throughout the company. It was centered on a single-minded brand positioning that would be leveraged across all platforms: Some beers have a story. This one has a legend.

There were no beer babes. No backyard barbeques. No slow motion shots of millennials fist bumping. Our approach was admittedly unconventional – we set out to make a simple, emotional connection between a bunch of really old guys and a 25-year old beer drinker.

We tested this approach with our target consumer. The result? They loved the story, wanted to support what it stood for, and felt emotionally engaged by it.

Original 16 6-Pack Design Detail
Original 16 Sales Folder Close Up
Original 16 T-Shirt Design

The Results

In the first year after launch, sales targets were exceeded by over 50%. Original 16 has grown into the largest domestic premium beer in its home market of Saskatchewan – beating out brands like Alexander Keith’s, Moosehead and Sleeman.

The brand launch of Original 16 has transformed Great Western Brewing Company.

Without a doubt, this success is in large part because of the strategic and creative capabilities of St. Bernadine and their contribution to our team.

- Ron Waldman, President & CEO (Former), Board of Directors (Current)

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