I’ve previously written on how the wine industry is making its presence felt in the online world. Vineyards and bottlers are using the Internet to join online conversation with consumers and distributors – and they’re doing it well.
Wine often enjoys an aura of sophistication that seems to run hand-in-hand with being tech savvy – there’s something oddly elegant about an ipad and a glass of chardonnay. But what about the beer industry? Does there seem to be something incongruous about an ale-fan knowing their way around an android phone?
Whatever our expectations, the beer industry hasn’t been slow to join the social media sphere. Just like the vineyards, brewers have been quick to notice the potential the world of social media has to enhance their marketing and provide a direct connection to consumers. As a dedicated hop-head myself I like to keep up-to-date on what the beer industry has to say online, and there is a lot of conversation taking place. Breweries seem to be getting the right idea about how social media works – it isn’t enough to simply promote yourself to your consumers – the trick is to engage with these people, ask their opinions and learn what they want and how to meet those needs.
As well as the breweries consumers themselves have got in on the action. CAMRA (the Campaign for Real Ale) have an extensive social media following allowing disparate chapters of the group the world over to share news and opinions. The App developers have been hard at work on this front too – http://untappd.com/ allows drinkers to share what they’re drinking and where they’re drinking it at the touch of a button – a boon to the brewing industry and the restaurants and bars that stock their products.
There are few things that bring folks together better than a pint, and it seems this is true even across the online-landscape. From small start-ups to brewing giants (think Guinness and Coors-Molson) beer is a subject that people get passionate enough about for the brewers to have a ready made audience. This isn’t to say their job is easy though – consumers will have high expectations, which means they’re easy to disappoint. So far though the breweries are doing a good job making the most of social media