Hop City is one of Ontario’s most established craft beer companies, but they had a problem. The Hop City master brand had little recognition with consumers. Most beer drinkers were familiar with their flagship offering, Barking Squirrel but didn’t know it was produced by Hop City Brewing Co. in Brampton, Ontario. The products also lacked a consistent tone, making it even more difficult to connect the brands back to the brewery and to stand out with a clear position in an increasingly crowded marketplace. It was our task to ground the brand in its new strategic positioning while reworking the master brand, product brands, website and all supporting materials without losing the good amount of equity the brand already had.
The new Hop City brand is inspired by adventure and discovery, which comes to life through a more industrial, city-inspired look and feel. The wordmark is bold, and declarative and prominently featured on all products to help elevate the connection between the Hop City Brewing Co. master brand and its many products. The brewery's brand identity leverages a monochromatic colour palette partly to support the overall tone, but to also let the individual brands shine through, which also helps provide presence on shelf through colour blocking and product specific illustrations that are simple yet expressive and used at a large scale. Though the rebrand is prominently featured on the cans, the entire Hop City world was updated, including the website, tap handles, coasters, glassware, wearables, sales materials, event experiences and more.
With the latest seasonal still rolling out, current numbers indicate strong growth across the board, and an increased awareness of the Hop City Brewing Co. master brand, and it’s newly growing stable of brands, while unique web visitors and social followers have more than doubled since launch.