The Launch of A Liquor Brand — Amidst A Pandemic

  • Insights

When husband-and-wife duo Josh and Alyssa Ammerman approached us in spring 2019, they were looking for a branding and marketing partner to bring their dream to life: a liqueur brand inspired by the couple’s shared love of craft cocktails and passion for collecting vintage cocktail glasses. Their very first liqueur’s early formulations emulated the beautiful color-changing properties of butterfly pea flower, and we used all this inspiration to develop Butterfly Spirits: a brand that nods to the golden age of cocktails and a product line with unique botanical blends and herbaceous flavors. Our end goal was to introduce an alternative to the mimosa in the day-drinking brunch scene, with our low-ABV spirits and super-Instagrammamde indigo liqueur. 


We started with Butterfly Liquor’s first two products: a liqueur and a floral vodka. After finalizing the parent brand and product packaging, we got to developing and implementing a unique go-to-market strategy, which was more required than ever due to the 2020 global health crisis. Stay-at-home orders meant that bar and restaurant traffic ground to a halt in spring 2020, so we created a strategy rooted in socially responsible activations and community-based partnerships (in addition to traditional marketing tactics — email, social paid search, public relations, and influencer collaborations). 


We were so excited about the partnerships and activations we were able to facilitate: 


Hook Hall Butterfly Garden

To provide a socially responsible summer escape in the middle of the city, we worked with Hook Hall to transform their outdoor patio into The Butterfly Spirits Garden: an Instagram-worthy space curated with planter boxes, live trellises, socially distanced seating arrangement, and a whimsical Butterfly-branded bar cart that allowed us to “bring the bar to the guest” with Butterfly-based beverages that reimaged the cocktail-ordering experience in a safer way.


BAR — Bartenders Against Racism

Butterfly Spirits teamed up with Bartenders Against Racism (BAR) to support the Black Lives Matter Movement. Participating bars included DC restaurants Compass Rose, The Gibson, Maydan, and Maketto. Butterfly donated products to each of the bars, and each bar partner created a designated “Butterfly for BAR Cocktail.” Proceeds from the sale of these cocktails were donated to BAR to support their legislative and mentorship programs. Our team worked with an influencer to promote this activation as well. Butterfly for BAR also included a social media component, encouraging those in the DMV to post pictures of their Butterfly for BAR cocktails on Instagram.


“Launching a new business is a daunting task for any entrepreneur. Emerging liquor brands are highly dependent on our ability to offer tastings. When the COVID pandemic hit and tastings were outlawed in our area we had no idea how we would convince consumers that our spirits were top-notch if they couldn’t try them before buying them. Our team at Streetsense was able to rapidly pivot our in-person strategy into a virtual campaign until we were able to engage customers directly. They literally saved our brand launch!” – Josh Ammerman, Cofounder of Butterfly Spirits


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