One Water Bottle To Rule Them All: The Craze of the Stanley Tumbler

If you’ve been to any store in the last couple of years, chances are that you’ve seen a huge, mountainous water bottle out of the corner of your eye. Standing tall and proud amongst the rest of its brethren, it’s 40 oz. sleek and candy-coated frame a beacon of style and intrigue. If you’re a true fan, you may have even waited in line in the winter cold just to just to get a rare and limited light pink version that was perfect for 2024’s Galentine’s!  

The Stanley water bottle has been an “it” item for the past several years. Whether you are a on the go college student out for your midday run or you’re a lifestyle influencer who wants to add some flare to your background while filming, the Stanley brand of water bottle is probably your go to.

But how did we get here? The Stanley company has been around since 1913, so it’s absolutely shown that it can last the test of time, but how did it get to the point where it’s become such a hot commodity item?

Revolutionary inventor and creative entrepreneur William Stanley Jr. created the Stanley cup all the way back in 1913. With a unique vacuum sealed, double walled stainless-steel body, this cup offered the chance to sip on your drink hot or cold. Double walled tumblers are amazing because they allow you to enjoy your beverage at its desired temperature while also being comfortable to hold onto, making it so that portability isn’t sacrificing the integrity of your beverage.

Even though Stanley has been a staple in the daily activities of athletes, joggers and gym goers for ages, the company has really picked up steam as of late, with the most popular item being the infamous 40 oz Quencher that you see everywhere. This one item seems to be the hot ticket that’s really pushed the company forward, even so much as bringing the company into a bracket of making a walloping $750 million a year business!

The story behind the Stanley Quencher taking off and helping the company soar into a new realm of business is one of hard work, innovation, paying attention to trends and trusting in your consumers. One woman in particular, Buy Guide cofounder Ashley LeSeur, absolutely loved the Stanley Quencher and had faith that if she took it upon herself to get traction, starting by selling to a small and controlled group with a batch she bought wholesale, that the Stanley Quencher would be beloved by one and all. That’s a lot of faith!

Together, Ashley LeSeur and Terence Reilly, Stanley’s CEO since 2020, listened to their consumers and started gearing Stanley cups towards the market that seemed to resonate with them the most – women. With its wide array of stunning and individual colors, Stanley Quenchers became a sort of iconic accessory that you could pair with your outfit, your activity, your nails – whatever color you wanted to emphasize that day. This combined with online marketing with hot influencers like Alix Earle helped showcase that the Stanley cups were something you could rely on – you didn’t have to sacrifice individuality and trendiness for the sake of top of the line utility.

What is it that the Stanley cup craze can showcase to us from a business perspective?  If you look at how Stanley as a company approached their desire to grow, one of the most Important steps that we see that they took was actively listening to and engaging with their consumers in real time. If you look at the Quencher, the overall design was even altered in the past few years to make it marketable to their desired demographic.

Rather than only running surveys, Mr. Reilly went about reaching out and hearing a variety of ideas from consumers, putting them on the same playing field as researchers and developers so that he could make sure he was completely in touch with what they’d like to see out an item.

What we can learn from Stanley’s remarkable flight into the height of sales is that active listening as an owner, a developer or even just a salesperson is more important than ever. Embracing your ideas and innovations and finding the market for them allows us to both express our passion for our products as well as invite our consumers who love them in to helping us make them even better for themselves as well as others who may not have had a chance to see those products yet.

There are a million and one wonderful ideas out there today, and sometimes it feels like our greatest ideas get lost in the noise. What Stanley has shown us is what matters most is resilience and versatility. So long as we don’t give up and believe in the quality of what we stand for, the sky is the double walled limit!