It’s no secret that both RTD and cold brew are rapidly becoming more and more popular. Selling your own canned cold brew coffee is a great way to capitalise on this growth. However, even with a quality product, it is hard to sell into such a competitive segment without a robust marketing strategy.

There are plenty of opportunities you can take to reach new customers with your drinks. But where should you start? And how do you guarantee success? 

We spoke to Brandon Bir, Director of Sustainability at Crimson Cup Coffee, to learn more. Read on to learn how you can capture your audience’s attention when marketing your RTD range.

Someone opening a can of Hard Beans canned cold brew coffee on a sunny day.

Start by advertising the advantages of canned cold brew coffee

Let’s start by looking at what sets canned cold brew coffee apart: taste, mouthfeel, and convenience.

For starters, cold brew is much more mellow thanks to the method of extraction. This means that its acidity is softened, and it often highlights chocolate flavours in the cup. This is perfect for new consumers – making it a perfect place to enter the market. 

Alongside this, more brands are also using nitro to create a distinctive mouthfeel in their RTD range. 

“I believe the mouthfeel contributes to the perception of sweetness and approachability,” Brandon says. “For some people, it’s far easier to drink than a hot coffee or a shot of espresso. It’s an easy delivery of caffeine without some of the bitterness or perceivable acidity that you might get with another brewing method.”

Nitro-infusion also gives the beverage a creamy texture and, when poured, creates a distinctive layered aesthetic. 

Beyond taste and texture, another critical element to consider is convenience. Canned cold brew coffee can be enjoyed whenever you like, whether at home or on the go. For younger consumers, this convenience is crucial. Combined with the fact that it can be enjoyed cold, you can also offer these products as natural alternatives to sugary energy drinks or sodas.

A glass of nitro-infused coffee with micro-foam

Consider your target audience’s preferences 

Cold brew’s rise in popularity in recent years has been primarily driven by Generation Z. This demographic has different preferences to previous generations, which affects their purchasing behaviour. This means you need to target them with your marketing.

Firstly, Generation Z coffee drinkers want to have their coffee their way. This means that a broad range of different options is key. For example, this could include unique flavourings, gluten-free alternatives, non-dairy milks, decaf versions, and even low-calorie options. When labelling your cans, you should clearly display these options so that consumers can easily find the product they want. 

Another factor to consider is authenticity. Generation Z are increasingly looking for transparency and authenticity from the brands they buy from, so they should be front and centre in any marketing campaign.

“We know that these consumers like transparency and the humanisation of their products. So, using a responsibly sourced coffee with a story could absolutely capture the attention of these demographics,” Brandon adds. “Don’t just focus on the taste or quality, but rather the hands behind the product.” 

Friends enjoying a nitro-infused canned cold brew coffee

Plan your overall marketing strategy

Finally, as with any good marketing campaign, make sure to have a plan to reach your target demographics. 

“You should meet the consumer where they’re at rather than relying on happenstance,” Brandon says. “Utilise social media, event marketing, and alternative distribution channels – marketing pop-ups on campuses or at concerts and other events can drive sales.”

Similarly, ensure tailor your messaging to the channel you’re using. For example, newsletters should have clear CTAs which drive potential customers to the right product, while videos on social media can be more about positioning your brand and creating a clear and cohesive identity. 

Canned cold brew coffee does have qualities which are inherently suitable to specific marketing channels, however. For instance, the foamy head and cascade have an “Instagrammable” quality that is extremely popular with younger consumers.

However, Brandon says he has one key tactic that he thinks is an unmissable opportunity: free samples.

“Nothing can speak louder than a taste of the quality of your beverage,” he says. “Getting in front of your consumer and having them actually taste your product will always win the day in my opinion.”

Sourcing canned cold brew coffee

Before you consider your marketing strategy, however, you need to figure out how you’re going to source your canned cold brew coffee.

While setting up your own manufacturing facility is an option, it is nowhere near as accessible as working with a private label manufacturer. This eliminates the upfront investment in equipment and facility space, while also ensuring you leverage the existing expertise of an external supplier.

Altogether, this makes it easier and cheaper to create your own branded RTD range than if you were to attempt it yourself. In turn, this gets it into the hands of customers quicker and means you can spend more time focusing on marketing your range – rather than overseeing production.

This is why working with a partner like Hardtank helps you to launch your own branded range of canned cold brew coffee, helping you enter new markets and attract more customers.

Interest in learning more? Contact the Hardtank team or sign up for our newsletter to stay updated.

Hardtank private label cold brew coffee.