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Scottish Craft Breweries use of Social Media

Survey Summary

In September 2010 we carried out a survey on the use of Social Media within the Scottish micro-brewery sector.
We found a generally low take up in the use of SM, with perhaps two or three notable exceptions. These notable exceptions include the clear leader in the sector Brewdog who have usefully used the power of Social Media to launch a successful share issue, and drive brand awareness and engagement up on an international scale. Typically the most active users of social media are those organisations that have a younger demographic in senior management.

However, for the generality and majority of brewers in the sector this would appear to represent a missed opportunity for a sector which would seem to have the characteristics of one that is well suited to benefit from engagement in Social Media.

Whilst it is possible to avoid the use of Social Media, its very nature means that others will almost certainly be using it to talk about your company and brand. We believe that it is much more sensible to be part of that conversation than ignoring it.

Typically smaller enterprises find it hard to find the resource to take the time to understand, set up and maintain a Social Media presence, and for those not familiar with its use it can be harder to recognise the opportunity it represents. However companies like Twintangibles can offer a cost effective solution to those problems.


Our survey – carried out during September 2010 identified 58 active, i.e. operating, trading or brewing Craft or Micro breweries in Scotland.

The intention was to establish the extent to which these organisations had a Social Media presence.

Social Media, which typically includes applications such as twitter, Facebook and YouTube to name a few, offers a powerful armoury of tools that can raise and extend profile and brand awareness for smaller organisations, and to generate deep customer insight and customer led innovation. Our survey was driven by a view that the craft beer consumer has characteristics that suggest Social Media would have particular interest and application to them and so craft beer producers would do well to consider the use of Social Media to generate value for their business.


Websites: Used as an indicator of the most basic online presence of the 58 active breweries 57 have a website of some sort and these varied in quality and scope from self produced single page sites to sophisticated professionally produced branded, community and e-commerce offerings.

Facebook: Of the active breweries 28 have a Facebook account associated with them. Some of these appear to be fan sites created by fans of the brewery but not employed or with any direct association with them, whilst others are created by the brewery itself or those directly employed and associated with it.
Of this 28, using the very modest criteria set out below – 11 were considered active. That is to say they were being used actively in some way and were not simply place holders or static “brochure ware” presences.

The average number of FB Members or Likes was 337. This may seem quite high but is skewed by the breadth of span of numbers which ranged from 1 to 1993.

Twitter: Of the 58 breweries we identified 12 had identifiable Twitter accounts of which we defined 9 as being active accounts.

Average number of followers is 693 with a span ranging from 30 to 4205. Once again the relatively small number of very active accounts skews the average upwards. Average number for Following was 196 with a range of 1-1025. Average Lists 60 span being 0 – 383

Other online Activity

There is some blogging, some flickr and other picture sharing services used and mashed up in the best examples, and some use of YouTube. Wikipedia entries existed for 25 of the breweries some of which are now no longer active or trading entities.

  1. Very interesting…

  2. Good Work!

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twintangibles Ltd is a company registered in Scotland with company number SC397987. Registered office is Blue Square House, 272 Bath Street, Glasgow, Scotland, G2 4JR

Correspondence Address is:
twintangibles, Blue Square House, 272 Bath Street, Glasgow, Scotland, G2 4JR