Your Mates Brewing on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia, started with two mates, Hep and McGarry, sitting on a blue futon in their makeshift garage bar chatting about life. Drinking craft beer was a new hobby, but after a while, they struggled to find a beer brand they could connect with.
After consuming countless beers (in the name of research), they had given up their search for the perfect beer.
“Maaate, how bloody hard could it be!?” This naive statement marked the beginning of a classic Australian underdog story.
Quitting their jobs to pursue their (new) brewery dream, the fellas were fuelled by a community of mates willing to lend a hand when times got tough. This mateship, combined with several years of blood, sweat, and beers, took the Your Mates name from a coastal garage operation to one of Australia’s most loved independent beer companies.
Now officially boasting the third most popular beer in Australia, Your Mates Brewing is also a case study in tech integrations to improve service efficiencies.
Introducing tech into a people-led environment
Your Mates Brewing’s Operations Manager, Ryan Henshaw, said creating the ideal guest experience is all about leveraging technology to increase efficiencies.
“In the early days, we really held off on any technology because we wanted the interaction to be between people,” Ryan said. “People come here to have a yarn, but then we realised that the tech could enhance the experience so they’re spending more time with their mates rather than with us.
“Instead of being in line, they’re having a chat with their mates over a quick frothy [a cold beer, for our non-Australian audiences]. There’s less crowding at the bar, but of course, not everyone wants to use a QR code, so we love the flexibility of our tech stack.”
me&u x Impos
“Our experience with me&u and Impos has all been really positive,” Ryan said. “Both sides have come together to help us achieve what we want to as a business. There’s always been a solution to any problem that’s come up.
“For example, we’ve just started doing takeaway and wanted to do a family meal deal. Setting that up with two tech partners that need to be fully aligned can be challenging, but it’s all been pretty seamless - we haven’t had any dramas”.
“Data is the biggest reason we went with me&u - we have massive amounts and we haven’t even touched the sides yet. We haven’t started using Connect [CRM] yet, but we’ll be pulling all the information from me&u soon. We did a big crowdfund just before implementation that we ran through me&u - guests couldn’t get their discount otherwise. It was great.
“Impos have been awesome to work with. We use it for all point-of-sale stuff - we haven’t done too much in the back end. There haven’t been any hiccups.”