Why Murray's Brewing Co is investing in a brand refresh

Founder of the Australian craft beer talks through the plans to give the brand and business an overhaul

Expanded premises, product innovation and a belief Australia’s craft beer category has somewhat lost its way has led Murray’s Brewing Co embark on a brand refresh and product expansion plan. 

The 14-year Australian craft brewer was founded in an old northern NSW pub that inspired the Slim Dusty classic, ‘The Pub with no beer’. Last week, its founder, Murray Howe, confirmed a fresh partnership with Melbourne-based creative agent, One Small Step Collective (OSSC), to undertake an overhaul of its brand and marketing plans. 

The business is best known for its beer brands, Angry man Pale Ale and Whale Ale Wheat Bar. The wider rebrand is part of efforts to realign different products across the portfolio. It’s also about expansion - Murray’s Brewing Co recently relocated its physical presence to the rural suburb of Bob’s Farm in Port Stephens, NSW. 

“While it is a challenging time, we believe now is the right time to refresh and invest in the brand,” Howe told CMO. “We feel that many brands in the craft beer market have lost their way, as one of the first craft beer brands in Australia we see it is our responsibility to support and drive the craft beer category.”  

In the short term, Howe hoped the refreshed and more consistent brand positioning would reconnect the business with customers.  

“Over the medium to long term, we see Murray's and our other brands as creating a platform for product and flavour innovation across brewed and fermented foods and beverages,” he said. “More than just a personal passion, it’s a craft and technique that has been explored and I’m excited to see how we can take it further.  

“Over the next 12 or so months, our focus will be on realigning the different brands and products in our portfolio as well as delivering an outstanding product experience out at Bobs Farm and other locations. Our beer and other products are built on quality, flavour and experience and we see activations as a key part of the brand moving forward.”  

Howe said he chose OSSC because of the agency’s broad offering outside creative, including data and insights, innovation, strategy and media. For its part, OSSC co-founder and creative director, James Procter, said it’s looking to retain the integrity of one of Australia’s oldest craft brewers while evolving the business and communications platform to attract new drinkers.  

“There are some amazing new products the team are working on and we can’t wait to get them out there,” he added.

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