Cutwater Brews Up Peet's Coffee AOR Assignment

San Francisco-based Peet's Coffee has named fellow Bay Area-based creative shop Cutwater as its new agency of record, following a formal review. Cutwater will develop the company’s brand positioning and a creative platform, which will be executed across broadcast, radio, digital and internal communications.

The account includes creative for its various brand extensions, including retail, packaged coffee, tea, and K-Cups. 

The new Peet’s brand positioning and creative platform will launch later this year.

“Peet’s is a beloved coffee icon in the Bay Area,” said Christian Hughes, president and principal of Cutwater. “As San Franciscans, we are already Peetniks, so it’s very exciting that we’ll be able to tell their story to a new generation of coffee lovers, both on the West Coast and throughout the country.”



The creative is likely to emphasize the company's authenticity and history. Founded in 1966 in Berkeley, Calif. by Alfred Peet, the brand is widely recognized as the grandfather of specialty coffee in the U.S.

“Peet’s is in the midst of a renaissance. We’ve accelerated our innovation, added more stores, and tripled our growth over the past two years by re-embracing the revolutionary spirit that our founder, Alfred Peet, started nearly 50 years ago,” said Tyler Ricks, CMO of Peet’s Coffee. “Like us, Cutwater’s craft is at the heart of everything they do and this shows in their work."

Peet's is a brand on the upswing. The brand is the fastest-growing coffee in measured channels for the latest 52 weeks, according to Nielsen. And Peet's has added $200 million in revenue since January 2013, with its growth largely fueled by stronger investments in store remodels, new coffee blends and beverages, and new markets like Chicago and Washington D.C. where Peet's added 20 and 15 stores, respectively, last year.

Still, while Peet's competes with well-funded brands such as Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts, the coffee brand has only spent $8,000 on advertising during Q1 2015, versus $10,000 during Q1 2014. Last year, Peet's ad budget was $737,000, according to Kantar Media. 

The brand has typically relied on quirky humor and education to raise its profile. Peet's previously worked with Tomorrow Partners for the "Ask a Coffee Nerd" campaign concept that used Peet’s in-depth coffee knowledge in a humorous manner. The creative introduced coffee facts, including that it takes exactly 42 beans to make an espresso.  
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