Raised in the hometown of James Dean and Garfield, Bad Dad Brewing Co.’s founders, the Howard family, are known for their commitment to quality. Their restaurant, Grains & Grill, has not only established itself as a destination for delectable dining but has elevated the surrounding culinary game in Fairmount, as a result. And it’s that standard of superior quality that inspired the Howards to, as they put it, “Bring big-city brewing to their small town.”

Bad Dad Brewing Co. arrived on the scene in 2017 and quickly became known for its experimental brewing approach. Beyond experimentation, they shattered expectations of what a small-town brewery can do from a quality perspective. With rapid success and aspirations to jump into canning, the brewery approached Pivot to help communicate that high quality. 

Our objectives were simple—help Barry Howard and his two sons, Patrick (Bad Dad’s head brewer) and Derek, determine if the Bad Dad Brewing Co. name truly worked for their brand and how, as a brand, Bad Dad can stand out among the ever-growing craft beer scene.

All In the Family

The brewery’s name originates from a tongue-in-cheek moniker the Howard boys gave their father after being required to work during their childhood summers. Ultimately, that instilled a work ethic that’s made their restaurant, brewery, and pizzeria a success. Fortunately, our research revealed customers loved the name, and it symbolized the Howard family’s bond to its small-town roots. Although they questioned it, they had built a brewery brand with great equity.

Leveraging the Name

The name “Bad Dad” provided a great jumping-off point for the rest of the brand. Additionally, it provided the license to lean into this identity across multiple applications. This included names and labels for their signature brews and designs for their now-iconic koozies, for example. As a result, the brewery has a brand boasting a recognizable (and memorable) name. It’s a brand that captures both the spirit of humble beginnings and the quality the Howard family is known for.