The Kentucky Distillers’ Association (KDA) announced its selection of Lewis to refresh its Kentucky Bourbon Trail branding assets ahead of the world-famous tourism attraction’s 25-year anniversary next year.

Founded in 1951, Lewis is a full-service marketing agency that delivers business growth at pivotal times for organizations in categories from healthcare to beverage marketing to education, based on insights from their own proprietary business intelligence and data science, to deliver provable results with measurable return on investment. 

Lewis is located in Nashville, Tenn. and has 100 employees working across three offices, including Birmingham, Ala. and Mobile, Ala. Creative work from Lewis has won hundreds of local, regional and national awards, and the agency has been internationally recognized with feature stories in Communication Arts, Graphis, and Novum. Graphis ranked Lewis as one of the top 15 advertising agencies worldwide for its creative product. 

Mandy Ryan, the KDA’s Director of Kentucky Bourbon Trail Experiences, said the historic non-profit trade group received dozens of proposals from around the world to refresh the hallmark tourism program that the KDA founded in 1999.

Ryan said the selection committee also was swayed by the Lewis team’s personable and passionate approach. “Their work is modern and engaging, and their excitement about this project put them over the top.

“We believe Lewis’s expertise will provide the perfect approach to shepherd us into the KBT’s next era.”

The last branding project occurred in 2009 when only eight distilleries participated in the KBT program. That number is now 42 distilleries, including 24 on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour, created in 2012 as the first tour in the country to showcase smaller distilleries. 

Additionally, Lewis and the KDA are exploring new digital tools to help tourists plan and guide their way across the birthplace of Bourbon. “In 2009, smartphones had just reached the market and there wasn’t much demand for digital assets,” Ryan said. 

Katie Peninger, VP of Account Service at Lewis, said, “We were already thrilled about the opportunity to work on something as legendary as the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, but the minute we met them in person, there was an instant connection that felt comfortable. We knew they were our people.”

Peninger said the agency’s work would build upon their previous brand experience with successful beverage companies and Lewis’ considerable tourism, economic development and placemaking experience. “It’s the perfect combination of needs for an agency like ours.”

About Lewis
Lewis is a full-service marketing agency that delivers business growth at pivotal moments for companies. With more than 100 employees at offices in Nashville, Tenn., Birmingham, Ala., and Mobile, Ala., Lewis develops internationally-acclaimed branding and creative advertising campaigns based on our business intelligence and data science to deliver provable results with measurable ROI. 

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