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Celebrating Five Years of Turn It Up Media

It's been great taking a deep breath and revisiting the experiences with Oskar Blues Brewery and CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective that created the knowledge and vision to support the Turn It Up adventure. We are truly blessed to have aligned an amazing collection of rad and talented people to collaborate on delivering creative and quality work for our clients. We're kicking off our 5 year anniversary highlighting work from each of the individual years building a great team and group of clients at Turn It Up Media. Let's roll.

YEAR #1 - CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective

After over ten years of leading the Oskar Blues Brewery brand and contributing to strategically developing the CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective narrative, Chad Melis and wife Marily Melis welcomed their daughter Arlen Green Melis into the world and started Turn It Up Media.

The entire CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective (Cigar City Brewing, Deep Ellum Brewing Company, Oskar Blues Brewery, Perrin Brewing Company, Squatters Craft Beer, Three Weavers Brewing Company, Wasatch Brewery) became TIUM's first Media Relations client and experienced years of industry leading earned media within the complex environment of the maturing craft beer space.

Year #2 - Altered State Distillery

For our second installment of celebrating 5 years we go back to our first Brand Development project with Altered State Distillery featuring collaborative TIU work by Melyssa Mead, Carrie Weady, Chad Melis and illustrations by John Vogl that earned four Triple Gold Medals for Packaging Design in the 2020 MicroLiquor Spirit Awards.

The project produced the Altered State brand story, brand positioning, logo design and unconventional spirits packaging that incorporated a "concert poster" illustrated approach featuring wildlife specific to the distillery's hometown of Erie, PA. Big thanks to the TIU team and to Gavin Maus and Aaron Hetz from Altered State for trusting us to bring their vision to life in a unique and ownable way.

Year #3 - Wander + Ivy

We were introduced to Wander + Ivy founder Dana Spalding in December of 2020 during an intense phase of the pandemic while the young company finished an astounding 425% growth year. Founded in 2018 as a disruptive DTC brand, they were shipping wine to 39 states and had entered distribution in four states (CO, TX, CA, NY) to close out the year.

In our third year of media relations Wander + Ivy challenged Turn It Up Media to break into a new beverage segment and communicate a brand narrative to slightly different consumers. The company was poised to fuel future growth by extending distribution into new states, creating a great opportunity for media relations to drive brand awareness, earn distributor share of mind and retail shelf space.

Challenge accepted. In the first year we built credibility with the W+I brand narrative to media outlets, secured over 130 media placements, sent over 100 qualified samples and earned over 380 Million impressions for the young brand. Read more HERE.

Year #4 - Spirit Hound Distillers

Since starting Turn It Up we’ve worked with Spirit Hound Distillers in a variety of ways including each one of our four offered services. We’ve known the founders for years, love their products and are proud to call them friends within our small town of Lyons, CO.

BRAND DEVELOPMENT: Mid year in 2021 we dove deep into the intentions and ethos of the Spirit Hound brand. What emerged from this undertaking was a unified group with a clear, intentional, and relatable understanding of their brand, along with a cohesive (hardcover book) document outlining the key architectural elements needed to support it: foundation, pillars, position, mission, audience, stories, voice, and tone. It’s an exceedingly thorough and utilitarian blueprint, a reference with elements that can be deployed any time, in a wide variety of applications. Read more about the Brand Development project HERE.

CONTENT CREATION: Turn It Up executed studio and product photography that elevated the presentation of the Spirit Hound brand through owned channels (website, social media, sales tools, POS) and initiated opportunities for featured images and cover story opportunities through media relations.

GO TO MARKET: We collaborated on the strategic Annual Business Planning process, developed sales tools and aligned the SHD sales team, distributors, retailers and program partners to roll out retail programming with consumer facing engagement to drive brand awareness, earn points of distribution and drive rate of sale for the brand.

MEDIA RELATIONS: We’ve had success with earned media placements for Spirit Hound over the years and most recently, after a pause in outreach efforts restarted and built a ton of momentum surrounding the authentic, hands on, grassroots nature of the brand and celebrated the quality of their spirits through leveraging the many awards the brand has earned. Read more about the six month media relations project HERE.

Year #5 - Zuni Street Brewing

There are many Colorado breweries featuring a mountain and some form of sun rays in their logo and packaging. As native Coloradoans who are expanding their Denver-born operation to a 2nd location in the mountains of Crested Butte, Willy and Theresa of Zuni Street Brewing were emphatic about maintaining the truly Colorado elements in their logo, but sought a way to differentiate themselves from the masses. As they approached the 5 year anniversary, it was time to dig in and be intentional with the future of their brewery brand.

We dug deep into Brand Development to establish the core tenants of the brand, delivered a brand architecture document that established audiences, brand pillars, positioning and communication intentions to direct copy and voice and tone for the brewery.

The brand architecture informed the creative process for a brand refresh (complete logo suite) and the development of a unique brand family of canned beers to differentiate the brewery on the crowded craft beer shelf.

The project earned THREE CRUSHIE AWARDS, two Global and a Domestic Gold, from the 2023 Craft Beer Marketing Awards for:




Read more about the strategic insights and approach of each design & the awards associated with them HERE.


A huge thank you to all amazing people doing what they love and making Turn It Up possible over the years: Dave Taylor, Melyssa Mead, Carrie Weady, Terry Kishiyama, Michael Eldridge, Helen Anderson, Jules Cuccurullo, Jeremy Farmer, Tory Powers, Tyra Sutak, Pate Katechis, Jenny Connolly, Chris Jones, Ally Levise, MFA, Matthew Leff, Callie Fuller, Eddie Clark, Emily Sierra, Fredrik Marmsater, Josiah Holwick, Rob Pero.

It's been a hellova first 5 years, we can't wait for the next 5. T H A N K Y O U ! ! !


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