Santiago Murphy, Creating New Innovations for Beer

Santiago Murphy, Innovation Director for Heineken USA, has worked with the popular beer brand since 2009 and has a passion for marketing.

With a love of beer and digital marketing, Heineken was the perfect fit for Murphy, who wasn’t always involved with the business world.

Coming from a family of immigrants and a diverse background including Spain, Cuba and American, Murphy always knew he wanted to have that international experience. Being raised in Spain, he had originally worked as a news producer in Spain and once realizing that he wouldn’t be able to have that international experience with his current job, he began a job in India where he worked for the Embassy of Spain.

After working for the Embassy of Spain in India, Santiago joined Heineken in 2009 through an International Graduate Program that took him to work for Heineken in the UK, Sweden, Austria and Spain. He moved to Heineken USA from Heineken Spain two years ago to pursue his love of marketing.

When asked why he chose the US branch of Heineken instead of somewhere abroad, Murphy told Abasto, “I already knew that I wanted to become a good marketer and I am obsessed with digital marketing. I think that one to one digital marketing at scale is the future and if I want to become number one at that, which I want, I need to do it in the market where it’s all happening, so a country like the US is an amazing place to develop myself.”

When it comes to Hispanics, their brands Dos Equis, Tecate and Strongbow have a strong reach among Hispanics and in states with a high amount of Hispanic population.

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“We are successful because we have relevant brands. What we continue to do is analyze the market and always look specifically at consumer trends and what consumers are expecting. We look and talk to the Hispanic population to understand what they expect next from brands like ours and then we try to put together the products and services that are going to repeal to the requests.”

Murphy works with market trends, what consumers are expecting from beer and trying to identify unmet consumer needs. A recent project he is excited about is the graft for home brand. For example, they know that consumers love craft beer and when they go to bars, 70% of the time they will drink beer in graft instead of in a bottle, but then at home 100% of the consumption is in bottles and cans because graft is not an option at home. To come up with a solution, Murphy said they created a platform where you could have a small countertop unit with mini-kegs delivered to your home that are easy to use and give you good quality beer.

“… We’re going to be selling countertop craft beer units that people can put in their kitchens. They’re going to be able to also buy mini-kegs of a big variety of beers and it just brings a new way of drinking beer with more quality, variety and convenience that it really does feel like a new way of drinking beer,” he said.