The Craft Brewing Social Media Engagement Report

Data-Driven Marketing Marketing Tools & Tips Social Media Best Practices

People love craft beer. So it’s no wonder that we see breweries popping up left and right.

Craft beer has enjoyed a resurgence in the last few years, growing to $23.5b in 2016 sales in the United States capturing 12 percent market share of the overall beer industry. As breweries proliferate across North America, they are looking to social media as a way to engage with fans and acquire new ones.

Social media provides a cheap, effective way for marketing teams to create an authentic brand. It’s one of the best ways for breweries, big and small, to grow brand awareness and focus their marketing efforts.

Download the Craft Beer Report

We wanted to find out which breweries are killing it when it comes to social – Who’s growing their audience? What sort of content are they posting? How can other breweries use this data to help them build smarter social media strategies?

We used Rival IQ to answer those questions and provide in-depth analysis and recommendations for craft brewers that want to up their social media game.

Instagram blows other channels out of the water

We looked at the average engagement per post across Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as well as how frequently brands are posting on each. There’s a pretty consistent split regarding posting frequency by channel: 1.5 times a day for Twitter, and around 0.8 times a day for both Facebook and Instagram.

However, the engagement per post on Instagram is 5x higher than Facebook and 40x (yes, 40) higher than Twitter. Craft brewers should start to reexamine their channel-by-channel strategy and make sure the Instagram thinking is sound.

Craft Beer Engagement by channel pie graph and bar graph

Audience is only half the equation

Some of the biggest craft brewers have built sizable followings across all three channels, particularly on Facebook and Instagram. But having a lot of fans doesn’t necessarily mean you’re doing well; often, the more followers you have, the lower your engagement rates will be. This is a trend we’ve seen in every industry report, bar none. Bigger brewers can turn to photos and videos, as well as boosted posts, to increase their engagement.

Craft Beer Top 10 Engagement vs. Audience Graph

It’s time for craft brewers to explore paid social

Engagement rates were quite consistent across almost all brewers, but Shiner Beer and Ballast Point stand out. Of the top ten performing posts (calculated by engagement rate), nine were boosted by either Shiner or Ballast.

These two brands also grew their Facebook fans by substantially more than the average growth of 2.07% (Shiner: 4.09%, Ballast: 3.5%). Boosting posts has helped expose their brand to a new audience, and in turn, build their communities.

Craft Beer Facebook Best Practices

The full report includes 28 pages of in-depth analysis, best practice recommendations and a complete ranking of the top 20 companies we studied. Download it today for free.

Download the Craft Beer Report

Torie de Jong

New to Seattle, Torie is a transplant from Sydney, where she was Head of Marketing at Squiz, a global marketing technology provider. She has a solid background in digital, content, and analytics, having built experience with a number of Australian tech business and agenices including Bang, Radar, and oOh! Beyond being a fantastic marketer, Torie is a dog lover and a huge history nerd (vikings, anyone?). This can, of course, lead to interesting meal-time conversation - particularly, when you're helping Torie complete her introduction to "real" American foods like chicken-fried steak and deep-fried anything.

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