By Clare Goggin Sivits On March 4, 2022

Why Celebrate International Women’s Day?

Craft spirits play a key role in celebrating many holidays. But, occasionally, it may be hard to figure out how a distillery factors into a global awareness holiday, like International Women’s Day. Maybe it doesn’t immediately strike you as a holiday your distillery should participate in. In reality, it’s an excellent opportunity to recognize both your female employees and the women who love your brand — and make them feel welcome.

A painting on a wall features a plant growing from the face of a woman, a representation of how celebrating women on International Women's Day can help distilleries grow their female following.

As a woman-owned food and beverage branding company, High-Proof Creative naturally celebrates International Women’s Day! And we believe all craft distilleries should join us in recognizing the women who work in the craft spirits industry. Not just on March 8 — but every day of the year. 

Beyond just alcohol branding and marketing, developing a campaign that highlights the women behind your brand and acknowledges how incredible they are has a number of benefits. It can raise your profile while increasing morale within your ranks. And perhaps you can even promote a good cause along the way.

If you’re still unsure about why it’s wise to incorporate International Women’s Day into your beverage marketing strategy, read on for a few more reasons and ways to celebrate.

Make Your Distillery a Supportive Workplace 

Before you go extolling the virtues of International Woman’s Day and reaping the benefits, make sure your distillery values women first and foremost. This means creating a space that equips female workers with everything they need to succeed. A few examples would be implementing equal pay programs, initiatives that protect women (and all employees) from harassment, creating opportunities for women within the leadership team, developing a leave policy that supports working moms, and so much more. 

All of the above examples may sound difficult. But if you can acknowledge you’ve got some work to do, that is a great start. We recommend communicating with the women who work at your distillery and finding out what they need. Collaborate with them to develop the most important programs. Get a plan going that will incorporate women’s values into your business 365 days a year.

Show Appreciation for Women in Craft Spirits

The women working for your brand operate in a very male-dominated space every day. While working in craft spirits can be incredibly rewarding, the job comes with the added responsibility of making room for yourself when you identify as an under-represented gender — or race for that matter. It’s exhausting. And it’s important employers acknowledge that work and support it.

Building resources that make your distillery a more welcoming place for female employees (as we mentioned above) is something that needs to happen year-round. International Women’s Day is one day each year that gives you the opportunity to promote those efforts, encourage other distilleries to also pursue the same goals, and raise up the women who continue to make your spirits amazing in the face of ongoing challenges in the industry. 

When you have a strong foundation of supporting women in the industry, giving voice to those that work for your distillery makes them feel empowered and boosts morale overall. It also helps spread an important message: women belong in the spirits industry!

Make Your Female Customers Feel Seen

Featuring the women who make, market, sell, and serve your spirits has the added benefit of putting a face to the brand. Women interested in purchasing your spirits or visiting your distillery get the message that your business is welcoming to women both behind and at the bar. In effect, you make it known: all are welcome here!

When you send a message that you not only welcome everyone but you genuinely care about their welfare, you open yourself up to a much wider audience. Positive messaging in general inspires people to pick up a product. When you direct that messaging at a group that is typically under-represented and discounted, you activate that crowd too. Essentially, you’re building a wider and more inclusive audience which is beneficial to the industry as a whole but also to you as a business.

Do Something Special

In addition to the work you’ve done to create an inclusive workplace, consider organizing an event to celebrate women. One idea is to set up a day when the women of your distillery come together to develop and craft a unique spirit that can later be released at the tasting room. Another activity or field trip for this group may also be a cause for celebration.

Whatever the event, document it and feature it on your website and social media platforms. Show your fans what your female colleagues are capable of and how talented they are. The event can happen at any time during the year — and multiple times during the year. But be sure to reshare the story on March 8 to get the story more traction.

Take Advantage of a Trend & Join the Conversation

By sharing your brand’s take on International Women’s Day, you immediately step into an active conversation. The themed content you publish online becomes part of the discussion on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or wherever you’ve chosen to publish it. It has the potential to not only spread a positive message but to also catch the eyes of all active participants.

With this in mind, it’s important that your content carries a message worth sharing. It should stand out in the sea of content that will inevitably be pumped out during the day. This is where you can get into the unique measures your distillery has taken to support women. Another way to stand out is to feature the women and their inspiring or unique stories. Make them the topic of conversation.

Use Your Platform to Address Issues that Matter to Women

Since you’re getting attention for your International Women’s Day content, make sure you share a positive message. In fact, you may even consider using the opportunity to support and promote a cause or charity relevant to women. Consider the opportunities in your community, such as raising funds for a local women’s shelter or directing profits from an event to non-profit supporting girls and young women. Maybe you could create a scholarship for women who want to become distillers. 

Whatever your cause, choose it and support it year-round. But make sure you get it in front of your customers on March 8, International Women’s Day.

Clare Goggin Sivits

As a marketer with a strong writing background, Clare Goggin Sivits has worked in the beer, spirits, and wine industries for nearly a decade. She oversaw digital marketing for a small wine startup as well as a craft brewery and distillery with a nationwide footprint. A Florida ex-pat, Clare now lives in Portland, Oregon, and continues to write about craft beverage marketing and the industry as a whole.

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