Selling Custom Hats to Alcohol Companies

Last time we looked at selling branded caps to beverage companies. Today, we're taking that a step further to look specifically at selling custom hats into the adult beverage industry.


The craft beer industry grew 18% in 2014, outperforming overall beer sales. Breweries take raw ingredients necessary to craft their unique artisan beers and turn them into a consumable product.

Breweries pride themselves on their product, ingredients, location, and of course, their fans. Craft beer connoisseurs are proud to affiliate themselves with their favorite microbreweries.

The best way to instill pride in a brand is with promotional products. Beer aficionados will experience a sense of ownership and belonging when they wear a cap branded with their favorite brewery, just as they do when they wear a cap with their favorite team's logo.IMG_2774.jpg


Like microbreweries, distilleries turn raw ingredients into aged, fermented liquors and spirits. There are both large, name-brand alcohols and small-scale distilleries.

Many offer daily walk-throughs of their facilities as a tourist attraction.

My parents became Maker's Mark Ambassadors; they even have their name on a barrel of bourbon in Loretto, Kentucky.

A lot of liquor companies offer programs like this. They'll periodically send things like promotional products and Christmas cards to their Ambassadors. Why not hats?

Schedule a meeting with any distilleries in your territory, large or small, to see what promotional product needs they have and discuss how caps can fill in the gaps.


Wineries are a big tourist attraction. They offer vineyard tours, tastings, pairing classes, grape stomps, some even have room and board on site. Travel makes up a significant portion of their revenue, and rarely do visitors leave without purchasing a case or two, at least in my experience.Not only are they using promotional products to sell their wines, they're also using them to attract visitors and entice them to come back year after year.

By selling or giving away caps with the winery's logo to tourists, they can create a memento or keepsake that visitors will take home with them to be reminded of the great time they had, thus inspiring them to return.

By positioning caps as a nostalgia item that will increase exposure and brand reputation, you can increase your promotional sales to wineries all over the country.

Alcohol Distributors

Distributors are always looking for ways to push their products, just like you are. Alcohol distributors, like energy drink distributors, are trying to get their beverages into grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, liquor stores, bars, nightclubs, venues, etc.

They will use hats branded with their drink's logo to help entice business owners to place that first order of their product and see how well it sells or to give their products prime shelf real estate.

Bars & Nightclubs

Bars and nightclubs are always looking for ways to drive business and increase their customer base. They do this by offering live music, trivia nights, DJs, holiday events, drink specials, etc.

Promotional hats are just one more piece of the pie, and it's your job to provide the ROI defense to prove it's worth their time and money.

Hats are one of the most inexpensive yet coveted promotional items. They don't get thrown in a drawer like pens or pushed to the back of a kitchen cabinet like mugs. They're worn in plain sight right on top of their customers' heads.

The next time a group is trying to decide where they should spend their Friday night, they'll go where they were treated well previously.

If they were given a gift they're even more likely to return-83% more likely according to a recent study by PPAI. And half of those surveyed (50% of men and 46% of women) prefer something they can wear over anything else.


Liquor Stores

Most consumers select a liquor store based on convenience, right? They stop by on their way home from work on Friday evening, or on the way to a friend's barbecue Saturday afternoon. 

Or, in some cases, people shop out of safety. Is it located in a good part of town? Is it dark outside?

What if we could change the way customers shop for alcohol? What if liquor stores could establish the same friendly ambiance sports bars and grills enjoy all over the country?

Would a shopper select a liquor store because last time she went she got a free hat after upgrading to the party size bottle?

If you told the cashier you were headed to a baseball game and he said, "Oh here, take a couple of our caps; it's bright out there today," would that encourage you to return next weekend?

I think promotional hats can do all of those things.

Promotional products are the most powerful medium to advertise businesses. People love gifts and they enjoy getting things for free. In a survey conducted by PPAI, 80% of people polled reported their impression of the company was positively affected after receiving a promotional product.

For more information on selling caps to the beverage market, order your own Business Development Kit.

Don't forget to check out the first blog in this series. What market would you like to see us cover next? Let us know in the comments below. You can also follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.