There are some 1400 breweries in the US, give or take. As of today, 13 January 2009, only 45 of them Twitter about their activities. [UPDATE 13 March 2009: Twitter craft brewery count triples to 150 in less than 2 months. UPDATE 2013: Now, almost every U.S. brewery has a Twitter account.]
Think of Twitter as a short text message of 140 characters, but one that can be sent to as many (or few) people as the user wishes. Tweets —as the short posts are known— can be created via cell phone text message or web.
But why should breweries be 'Twittering'?
BeerNews.org offers some strong reasons:
Read his entire post, which includes the list of all 45 breweries.
- Build a small following around your brewery and get to know those who drink your beer who may not be local.
- Quick feedback/questions/answers exchange
- Reach the 35-44 demographic (closely followed by the 18-34 group, even though we'll need to legally ignore those first three years for now.)
Personally, I find Twitter to be a useful addendum to my blog.
- I can make succinct observations about beer and wine and post them across several platforms. They appear, for example, here on my blog, on Facebook, and on my website (in addition to Twitter.com itself).
- Using Twitter posts almost as a time-stamped journal, I can collate them into a longer blog piece.
- By following other people in the beer and wine business, I can learn of things of importance to that business, quickly.
- I can link to beer news stories or blog posts here and send them out on the Twitter network.
- I can publicize events in which I'm involved, in real time. [UPDATE: Twitter scooped regular media in reporting the splash landing and rescue of Flight 1549.]