Monday, March 02, 2009

Flying Dog rides Web 2.0 to #1

From the end of January through the end of February, the website and beer blog ran an on-line poll to determine "the best East Coast brewery", that is, its readers' favorite brewery of the East Coast.

And the winner is ...

Flying Dog Brewery, transplanted from the Rocky Mountains to the hills of Frederick, Maryland

Maryland's other large production brewery, Clipper City of Baltimore, finished 7th. Number two was another 'dog' brewery, Dogfish Head, of Delaware.

Polls such as this are not scientifically accurate. And that's no knock against Full, which never claimed that its poll was anything but fun.

But one thing that the poll did demonstrate was the power of using Web 2.0 skills as free, effective, guerrilla marketing.

The poll began with a large lead for Dog Fish Head. Dog Fish Head was the first famous East Coast Craft Brewery to get national recognition after Samuel Adams began contract brewing their beer nation wide. <...>

Then, through the power of Twitter, a social network service that I can describe to you as a micro blog/global chat room, started to shape what would be the outcome of this poll. Through guerrilla marketing, Dog Fish Head and Flying Dog sent many of their loyal drinkers to to cast their vote. SmuttyNose and Erie also used the power of their Internet fan base to have votes casted on their behalf.

This poll got so big, that Beer Advocate got wind of this poll. <...> how the heck could breweries with higher BA rankings possibly get out ranked by the final four of this poll. The answer is simple, loyalty, and the power of guerrilla marketing via social network sites.

Flying Dog Wins Best East Coast Craft Brewery Honors
February 27th, 2009

Flying Dog is quite aggressive with its on-line presence. For contrast, Clipper City Brewing has no official Facebook or MySpace page, does not Twitter, and last updated its blog in November 2008. [UPDATE 2009.05: Clipper City on Facebook, Twitter.]

As Dan at states, all the breweries in the poll produce delicious beers, and all are worth searching out. But, of course, it was Flying Dog that did win!

Twenty were entered; here are the results:
  1. Flying Dog (37.0%, 1,502 Votes)
  2. Dogfish Head (26.0%, 1,029 Votes)
  3. Smuttynose Brewing (8.0%, 304 Votes)
  4. Erie Brewing (5.0%, 194 Votes)
  5. Victory Brewing (4.0%, 162 Votes)
  6. Tröegs (3.0%, 124 Votes)
  7. Clipper City (3.0%, 123 Votes)
  8. Southern Tier (2.0%, 93 Votes)
  9. Ommegang (2.0%, 90 Votes)
  10. Allagash (2.0%, 80 Votes)
  11. Duck Rabbit (2.0%, 78 Votes)
  12. Brooklyn Brewing (2.0%, 75 Votes)
  13. Magic Hat (1.0%, 49 Votes)
  14. Harpoon (1.0%, 34 Votes)
  15. Iron City (1.0%, 24 Votes)
  16. Flying Fish (0.0%, 19 Votes)
  17. Stoudts (0.0%, 16 Votes)
  18. Long Trail (0.0%, 15 Votes)
  19. Iron Hill (0.0%, 12 Votes)
  20. Otter Creek (0.0%, 10 Votes)
  • UPDATE: 27 February 2009. is at it again with an on-line poll for favorite southern US breweries. As before, it is a limited list.
  • Caveat: I am employed by a northern Virginia wholesaler that distributes Flying Dog, Clipper City, Allagash, Brooklyn, and Otter Creek beers.

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