Social media is one of the most talked about advances in marketing ever. Finally, it seems, marketers can have a direct impact on the most coveted form of advertising: word of mouth. Starting and engaging in brand conversations is easier than ever, and many marketers have successfully tapped into this powerful communication channel.
Now its even easier for beer marketers to reach their audience. Instead of listening and monitoring only the broader conversations occurring on Facebook and Twitter, beer brands can focus on a social network dedicated to beer drinkers around the world.
Untappd, which just celebrated its first anninversary and recently launched native smartphone apps for iPhone and Android (http://blog.untappd.com/post/10844733770/weve-gone-native), has harnessed the recent surge in craft beer with its social network.
In essence, anytime someone sips some suds, they can check into their beer on Untappd and include their location and a photo of the frosty glass (or can or bottle).
As of yet, there appears to be little involvement from beer brands on Untappd.
Not only can brewers apply their Twitter and Facebook tactics to Untappd, but they can more easily spot realtime trends in consumption. Astute brands will see shifts from wheats to pumpkins, for example, and adjust upcoming recipes accordingly.
There are also interesting advertising implications. A brewer like Cigar City, for example, could serve display ads to anyone drinking their beers in the Tampa Bay area to encourage a trip to the brewery for a tour and some tasters.
I look forward to seeing how beer brands use Untappd in the future. But until then, I will enjoy earning my badges and checking up on what my friends and family are enjoying this fall.
What marketing opportunities do you see for brewers in Untappd and other social media?