By Stephanie Rudnick
Stephanie Rudnick

MKTG’s very own Senior Guinness Brewery Ambassador Chris McClellan was recently notified that he passed his Advanced Cicerone Exam. To put this achievement into perspective, there are currently 100 Advanced Cicerones in the world, and less than 10% of people who pass, do so on the first attempt, as Chris did. We all know that Chris knows beer, and this certification places him in rare company. We sat down with Chris to learn a little bit more about how he turned his love for all things beer into a career, and how the entire Guinness Brewery Ambassador team at MKTG has helped Guinness build on their reputation as a leading global brewery.

Q: Tell us about your role as a Senior Guinness Brewery Ambassador at MKTG:

A: We started the Guinness Brewery Ambassador program at MKTG about three years ago with the vision of building a national team of beer experts and storytellers. This is a totally unique offering in the beer business, even today, with no other brewery offering this sort of team. It’s an unbelievably interesting yes complicated beer market here in the U.S, with almost 7,000 operating breweries across the country.

Today, beer is all about great stories and education, and our efforts have nicely positioned us to fully support and help build on the audience for Guinness’ portfolio. My role is both as a regional Ambassador for the brewery, and strategist for program. I help set some of the vision for the program, along with our entire team of talented Ambassadors, build our digital presence and toolkit, and try to act as a sounding board for any/all beer-related programming in my region.

Q: How did you land a job working in Beer? What was your journey?

A: I have worked in beer for about ten years now, on and off. My first job in beer was upon finishing business school at the University of Vermont when I landed a job at Magic Hat Brewing Company, my local brewery in my hometown of South Burlington, VT. Most people have heard of Magic Hat, so it was a great springboard into the industry. Since then, I’ve worked in various positions, both in strategy, marketing and sales.

I started my storytelling website and digital consulting practice about six years ago, The Brew Enthusiast, which I still try to write for with whatever time I’ve got left in the day (if you’re interested in beer, sign up for the weekly newsletter). I have written about beer for a bunch of different publications over the years as well, which is how I got on the radar for Guinness. I could talk about this story for hours…I’ve gotten lucky more than few times to get to where I am now, and I think most people could say that about their careers in some regard.

Q: What is the Advanced Cicerone® Exam? Is it for Guinness experts only or for beer …read more

Via:: MKTG Blog