Frequently a company or a brand’s use of social media is not marketing, but being someone’s friend, noted Bob Morehouse and Josh Hill of Vermilion Inc., Boulder, Colo., during their presentation on social media at the Craft Brewers Conference in Chicago in April. Many craft brewers are using Facebook, Twitter and other websites to communicate with their often passionate fans, the speakers noted.

In turn, people are able to share their love of the brands with their friends. Every day 20 million people declare their allegiance to their favorite things on Facebook, Morehouse and Hill said. Last month, the website changed the term from “fan” to “like.” For brand pages, this provides more awareness because liked pages will appear on a user’s profile and posts from the page will be posted as news, Facebook says.

As mentioned in this month’s cover story, more than 1.5 million Facebook users follow Dr Pepper. The conference also noted the ways craft brewers have used the sites to connect with consumers to share news of seasonal launches and special events.

In addition, Mountain Dew embraced the opportunity to interact with its consumers via social networking sites. The PepsiCo brand recruited 4,000 of its most loyal fans to help co-create the flavor, color, name and package design of the three DEWmocracy 2 options — Distortion, Typhoon and Whiteout. Mountain Dew’s legion will continue to use websites to campaign for their favorite flavor.

I encourage you to channel your passion for Beverage Industry magazine and check out our Facebook page, become a member of our professional group on LinkedIn and follow us on Twitter.

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