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Flensburger Brauerei

Flensburger Brauerei is a family-owned company that has been on the market for 130 years, making it one of the most traditional breweries in Germany.

The company became known throughout Germany for its promotion of its beer with the unique “plop” sound of the swing-top bottle and has now placed a number and beers and other beverages on the market.

The company is attempting to position itself in additional sales markets. In particular, the focus is on China and the USA, the two largest sales markets for beer. The challenge is to adapt the German-language communication, which is based on North German humor and its USP – the “plop”, in a way that promises success.

Our Master’s students were dedicated to this problem in the module “Digital Branding”. The students were given the task of designing a communication strategy for entering the two largest beer markets worldwide.

Under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Suwelack, the students worked on a communicative central idea for the American and Chinese markets and initial implementation ideas for the central idea were created. Based on primary and secondary data, the Flensburger brand as well as the two international markets USA and China were intensively researched, so that a suitable conception of the communication strategy could take place.

The students started the project in a hybrid format with presence as well as video conferencing. This allowed the practice partner to be connected online for the briefing session as well. During the feedback sessions and also in the final presentation in February, the students used their online skills and presented their developed concept to the Flensburg team, professionally on the screen.

In the presentations, the students took one of the targeted markets at a time and analyzed it for its cultural differences to present creative guiding principles as well as suitable implementation outlines for the respective markets. With key ideas such as “Refresh the German in You” or “American Plop”, the different groups were able to impress and succeeded in taking cultural differences into consideration in their communication strategy without losing Flensburger’s North German charm and humor.

On Flensburger’s side, the project was accompanied by Merle Schult, Marketinginnovationen & Social Media, Bernd Diers, Director int. Sales and Jörn Schumann, Marketing Director, were very pleased with the students’ ideas. Afterwards, the students received a certificate for their successful participation and an invitation to the company’s brewery.

We sincerely thank Flensburger Brauerei for their cooperation. Through this practical project, our students gained a deep insight into the beverage market in the Beer sector.  This project helped our students to get to know how a company has to act in order to enter new markets in a competitive market and which challenges they have to face.

Key Facts

  • Module: Digital Branding
  • Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Thomas Suwelack

Research Methodology

  • Market analysis based on primary and secondary data
  • Brand analysis
  • Target group analysis
  • Conception for the communication strategy