February 12, 2019

Beer People Interview: William Tabone Play Harder Tours

Beer marketing is about beer and marketing. The main thing both of those have in common is people. If you want great beer or great marketing you need great people.

At #BeerMarketing our goal is help beer people get better at marketing and to help marketing people get better at marketing beer. So enjoy an ongoing series of interviews of beer people, marketing people and our favorite: beer marketing people.

Beer Marketing: William Tabone Play Harder Tours

Play Harder Tours offers a consultative Travel Agent service that draws on over 30 years of travel experience. We offer both group and individual travel in either guided or self guided tours. We have expertise in North & South America, Europe and Asia.

Do it Yourself is alive and well at Play Harder Tours! How you use our services is entirely up to you. You can use the provided links to self book, or if you prefer we can do it for you.

Our Services Are No Cost To You!

You Receive Amazing Stress-Free Vacation Planning.

We Get Paid By The Vendors We Work With.

You Have An An Incredible and Unforgettable Trip.

Get Started by Reaching Out and Having A Conversation.


Call (904) 910-7009 for FREE travel consultation.

beer centric traveller

How would you describe what you do to your grandma?

We are a full-service travel agency, but what makes us different is our unique specialty of Beer Tourism and how we approach booking our guests. Every booked trip, every recommended experience is based on OUR first-hand experience. We have first-hand knowledge of the places we go and let our experience guide our recommendations.

How would you describe what you do to beer industry peers?

I honestly believe we are under the radar, in stealth mode. Very few travel industry people understand and operate inside this beer tourism specialty. Those of us inside this specialty tend to work together, collaborating in some ways and cooperating in others. Much like competing craft brewers do.

What’s your super power?

I have sense of direction superpowers, the uncanny ability to know my location without getting lost. Although, when traveling it’s sometimes fun to get lost (example Venice) The exploration be the best part of traveling.

How long have you been involved in the beer industry? 

We started our business in 2009, with a 3 1/2 year break in between. We redirected our efforts from being a company offering bachelor/bachelorette party trips to a full-fledged travel agency which enabled us to really focus on what we love, travel to beer-centric destinations and offering our expertise to wanting travelers.

What was your ‘gateway/intro/omg’ beer that got you into enjoying beer rather than just consuming it?

Every trip brings new discoveries, in April/May 2018 we traveled to Munich for Fruhlingsfest, their Spring Beer Festival, also visiting Hallstatt Austria, Cesky Krumlov The Czech Republic and Prague! I fell in love with Prague. We visited a 900-year-old brewery/restaurant (U Fleku) that served a marvelous dark lager…OMG!

What are the last three beers you drank? (Brewery, beer name)

Lately, I have been on a Dark Beer focus Delirium Nocturnum, Chimay Blue, Hofbrau Dunkel

You get only two beers while stuck riding the mars rover. Which two do you pick? (Brewery, beer name) and why?

Pilsner Urquell and Cigar City Cubano Style Espresso, something light and something dark. I’ve never been to Mars so I want to be flexible.

What is your “OMG, right now, can’t get enough of it, must drink more” beer?

Anything dark, love that background taste of coffee and chocolate!

What does “Beer Marketing” mean to you? (be as verbose as you want)

It’s all about collaboration! Working together with others in the business to spread the word and to learn about other beer cultures. I work with local beer tour providers in every city we visit, nobody knows the local beer culture like a local. I have an article soon to be released in conjunction with the Beer Marketing and Tourism Conference in Boise. The article outlines collaboration opportunities between travel agencies, breweries, guilds and local beer tour providers. I would be happy to give you a sneak peek once it is completed.

What beer company do you think does an exceptional job at overall marketing? (product, promotion, people, retail, packaging, social etc)

You never said I have to like their beer. InBev without question locks in all three spots with Bud Lite, Budweiser, and Stella Artois. Great Super Bowl Advertising! Very entertaining… I’ll pass on their beer with the exception of Stella, Beck’s, and Leffe

What’s your favorite beer marketing this year? (brewery and whatever marketing they did)

Again the Super Bowl ad, my favorite was the Stella Artois “change things up advertisement”. You wouldn’t believe how often I’m told I look like “The Most Interesting Man” It was nice to see him back on TV

Dublin is a beer lovers city

What Beer Marketing do you wish Breweries would stop?

no comment!

What is your #1 pet peeve about what too many beer companies do wrong in their marketing?

As a craft beer and European beer lover, I see beer ads as entertaining, but without substance.

What two marketing related activities do you wish more breweries would do more of?

Craft Beer companies do not have the budget for flashy ad campaigns, keep up the great logo, interesting names, and eye-catching can design. Above all stay connected to your local markets.

You only get to choose one: What’s more important for the long term success of a brewery? And Why? Exceptional Product or Exceptional Marketing & Branding

It has to be an exceptional product if it doesn’t taste good people won’t drink it.

Is the overall Beer market:

  1. Over-saturated (too many breweries, not enough drinkers, more closures than openings) or
  2. Under-saturated (unmet demand, more breweries open than close, more beer will be consumed.)

A little of both

Is YOUR City Over or Under saturated?

Every month we have new local craft breweries opening in Jacksonville, FL I love the concept but fear the over saturation.

What are your Top Three breweries in your city?

My three favorites in the Jacksonville Florida market would be Intuition Ale Works, Aardwolf Brewing, and Jacksonville’s first craft brewer Bold City Brewery.

Beer Marketing People are Awesome.

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