Fever-Tree, the upmarket tonic and drinks firm has had great success since launching in 2005. It was listed on London’s AIM market in 2014 and since then shares have increased almost 20-fold, according to Bloomberg. It’s a great story for the City and an even better story for the brand & marketing community. By creating a brand, more than just a tonic, Fever-Tree has become a rival to Schweppes in more than just taste. Here’s how:

1. The market opportunity:
They noticed there was a market opportunity with only one mixer in town, the mass-market Schweppes.

2. Timing:
They tapped in to a gin revival in the UK, US and Europe, appealing to consumers that wanted a ‘craft’ product/experience.

3. Brand positioning:
They differentiated themselves around quality and natural ingredients – “Schweppes was the only other brand on the market and it contains artificial saccharin, which makes all gins taste the same,” said co-founder Charles Rolls in a Telegraph interview.

4. Brand association:
They were seen in all the right places from the beginning, appearing in upmarket bars, restaurants and supermarkets. Shortly after launch they landed on the shelves of Harrods (London) and today, claim to be in 9 out of 10 top restaurants.

5. Storytelling:
They told great stories that connected with their audience. They celebrated the provenance of the ingredients, talking about staring down militia armed with AK-47s to source quinine in Congo, finding bitters in Tanzania, oranges in Seville and lemons in Sicily. They also had a strong campaign line, “If ¾ of your Gin and Tonic is tonic, make sure you use the best”.