One of my favorite things is the way that so many of our local breweries, pubs and bottle shops are effectively using social media to keep us informed. In addition to running the Washington Beer Blog, I also help small businesses launch websites and market their products and services online. That is, I drag people kicking and screaming into the 21st Century.
Some businesspeople think that there is no value in social media–that their business cannot possibly benefit from things like Facebook and Twitter. Okay, Grampa. Drop this film of at PhotoMat for me when you go out to return that video cassette to Blockbuster. Don’t forget to rewind.
Perhaps no industry is better suited to take advantage of social media than the beer industry. After all, beer is an inherently social thing. And social media allows the beer producers and sellers to talk directly (or via beer bloggers like us), to craft beer lovers who in turn spread the word.
Evolution is Inevitable
Yes, beer is a social thing. That’s what we love about it. Not only does it taste good and have undeniable therapeutic value, but beer brings people together. Historically, the local pub (public house) has been a place where people gather to stay connected to their community. Beer, and its aforementioned therapeutic effects, is just a part of the equation.
Facebook is kind of like a virtual pub. It’s where people get together and talk. It’s a way for people to stay connected to their friends and their community. For a brewery to say that there is no value in having a Facebook presence is like a brewery saying there is no value in having its beer on tap at the local pub. It is a big conversation and you want to be part of it.
Today, Facebook and Twitter are bursting with news and information from the Washington beer scene. Sure, some of our local breweries, pubs and other beer-related businesses are doing a better job of it than others, but I love the fact that so many of the people and businesses across the beer industry have embraced social media.
Because of Facebook and Twitter, we are creating a greater beer community. We are online chattering about craft beer incessantly. It is a beautiful thing. We’re talking about great pubs, great festivals and great breweries, and it sounds like we’re having a really good time. Our friends who are less passionate about beer hear us.
Collectively, we are doing a fantastic job of marketing craft beer. Mainstream media is beginning to hear us clamoring about beer. They’re starting to pay attention. We are helping spread the good word about good beer. Cheers to us!
Media begets media. A couple weeks ago a few beer geeks were on KUOW talking about winter beers. Last week Pat Ringe from Diamond Knot Brewing was on KOMO radio talking about beer-food pairing. Tonight, Evening Magazine will be on-location at Big Al Brewing. Because we keep chattering about beer on Facebook and Twitter, we’re getting the snowball down the hill.
Behold the Power of Twitter
This evening, tune into King 5 television at 7:00 and you’ll see Big Al Brewing. Why in the world did Evening Magazine decide to shoot on-location at a small brewery in White Center? Because we told them to. The show’s host, Jim Dever, sent a message out on Twitter asking his followers to suggest a location for an upcoming show.
Because we (the beer community) are so active on social media, Jim Dever’s Twitpoll – where to host the Friday shoot – went viral. Next thing you know I’m sitting in Big Al’s tasting room at 10:00 a.m. on a Friday morning drinking beer on television with my new friend @sudsymaggie, who is largely responsible for making the whole Evening Magazine thing happen.
As I write this post, it is 11:15 a.m. on a Sunday morning. Naked City Taphouse (@nakedcitybeer) just tapped a keg of Dupont Avec Les Bons Voeux, replacing Beer Valley Leafer Madness. How do I know this? Because whenever something goes on tap, a tweet goes out to the 1,200 people that follow Naked City on Twitter.
If I happen to be going to the Seahawks game, I can get Scuttlebutt Gale Force IPA at Qwest field–sections 107 and 132. @ScuttleButtBrew just told me so on Twitter.
Schooner Exact Brewing is debuting a new beer called Profanity Hill Porter at their taproom today (Sunday). Just learned that on Facebook. Heck, I didn’t even know they were open today. Now I do.
That, my friends, is keeping your fans informed. It is, in a word, awesome!
Cheers to all of the businesses and people in the Washington beer community who use social media to keep us informed! Collectively, you are one of our favorite things.
You will be hearing more from us regarding this whole Beer on Social Media phenomenon in the very near future.