Sell more beer
Sell more beer
Take part in Craft Beer Hour's promotional opportunities and promote your products to a highly engaged, consumer-led community.
✔ Increase brand awareness
✔ Drive trade and retail sales
✔ Boost social engagement
✔ Find new ambassadors
This page includes a case study, pricing and some frequently asked questions.
10 minute read
Updated 9th April 2019
Now in its fifth year, Craft Beer Hour takes place on Twitter every Tuesday, 9–10pm (GMT). If you’re interested to see some stats surrounding the hashtag on Twitter, I’ve put together a report for the first four years. Although this weekly event is hosted via Twitter, an increasing number of Instagram users also using the #CraftBeerHour hashtag.
I founded it in November 2014 after spotting that no-one was employing for craft beer, the already recognised concept of a ‘Twitter hour’. One year later, Electric Beer became the first brewery to send out samples to our followers. At the time they were a brand new brewery looking to circulate their beers to passionate people who would give honest feedback. This helped raise awareness of their brand outside of their immediate area, bringing them to the attention of beer lovers and retailers all over the UK. In October 2018, Electric Bear returned to launch a new beer, then also becoming the fiftieth brewery to take part in the feature.
I hope you too will find sending samples to the Craft Beer Hour community a fantastic way of increasing your brand awareness, boosting social engagement — and selling your beer!
Example case study: One Mile End
Email 5: Fri 27 Apr 2018
Proposition: 10% off a special mixed case
In the case: 6 beers including two specials
Price incl. discount: £20.25 plus delivery
Total orders: 5
Total value: £119.00
Here's the email
Email 1: Mon 23 Apr 2018
Email 2: Wed 25 Apr 2018
Proposition: 10% off trade orders
Available on: 4 beers in keg and can
Min. order: 3 units
Total orders: 11
Total value: £1,658.10
Here's the email
Total sales: £1,777.10
Hosting Craft Beer Hour is free, however, for breweries looking to widen the reach of their beers, I offer a highly targeted sequence of promotional opportunities.
The process costs £250 to take part in and will feature the following aspects.
Nationwide showcase events
In February 2019 I launched a brand new scheme called Partner Venues. Members of the scheme (partnering bottle shops, taprooms and pubs, for example) commit to putting on events to showcase at least one of our two featured breweries per month. This means that in addition to exposure through Craft Beer Hour itself, as a featured brewery you’ll potentially see a number of physical events around the UK showcasing your beer. There’s no extra cost to take part in this outreach – you just need to have enough beer to sell to them! You may also receive orders from retailers who aren’t putting on events and instead are featured as Partner Stockists.
After promoting you to the trade, you’ll be centre stage in the Craft Beer Hour Samples Draw. For this you need to be able to commit to sending out samples to ten different people.
In a nutshell, people receive an email inviting them to enter the draw. People who can commit to being free to take part in Craft Beer Hour on your corresponding week then enter the competition by completing an online form. I download the results as a spreadsheet, cut up the entries and then broadcast a draw live on Periscope.
After the Samples Draw I follow up with the opportunity for people to buy your beer online – targeting those who don’t win!
Throughout the process you’ll receive lots of promotion around your brand to the Craft Beer Hour community through Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, typically garnering 50-100 engaged new followers on Twitter alone.
The process described here typically involves six to eight emails, strategically spaced to allow for segmented reminders, often taking the total tally to around ten.
Do we need to attend an event as part of Craft Beer Hour?
No. You can if you want to! But Craft Beer Hour itself happens on Twitter, which means you can be anywhere. I recommend somewhere comfortable, where you can concentrate!
Who sends out the samples?
You do. I do not have any involvement in the fulfilment of samples or orders.
What are the requirements for the sample packs? Multiple beers? Merch? Fancy boxes?
The minimum number of people you can send to is ten. What goes in the parcel is entirely up to you.
To justify the cost of postage and packaging, I would recommend filling the box, but it really depends on what you want to send. Some people send one bottle, some people send six cans. I would say 2, 3 or 4 cans is the norm. Throw in some merch if you’re feeling flush!
When do we send out the samples?
The draw always takes place on a Tuesday – typically the week before you’re hosting Craft Beer Hour. You will receive the winners names and addresses by the following morning at the very latest. It is then over to you to send out the samples, ensuring they arrive by the following Tuesday (which will typically be your week hosting the hour).
I strongly recommend that the samples arrive by the weekend since this gives people time to post about them online ahead of Tuesday. If a parcel ends up a local sorting office it then also gives people a wider window of time to fetch it or arrange for a re-delivery.
Can we up-sell to the competition winners?
Yes! If you ship boxes that are quite big, up-selling helps to reduce your costs. For example, you could offer four free beers to the winners. We can then offer them the opportunity to make it up to a full case by paying the difference.
This would be completely optional for the winners and most people will likely stick to the free beers, with free delivery, but it's quite a compelling proposition to pay a relatively small figure towards the case and get at least double the beer for your money.
Can you suggest a courier?
You don’t need me to tell you how to package your product, but I would certain err on the side of caution when it comes to breakables. The time frame for sending out samples is narrow, so you don’t want to be having to send replacements last minute. Plus that’s an added expense. In terms of couriers, people frequently use Royal Mail, ipostparcels, My Hermes, Parcelforce, DPD, DHL…
We want to send out beers that aren’t available to buy yet. Is that a problem?
That certainly not a problem. The more exclusive the samples, the greater the anticipation for the draw. The selling aspect of the process (Emails 1, 2, 3 and 5) is simply to encourage retailers and beer fans to buy your beer, however if they’re not available, they’re not available! In that instance (and if applicable) I would recommend promoting other beers in your range so that the people who don’t win the samples can still take part.
Can we keep the email addresses?
My mailing lists are not available to third parties. You will however receive the email address of the individual winners (incase you use a courier that provides notifications, or if there’s a problem and you need to contact the person).
What’s involved in hosting Craft Beer Hour?
You host Craft Beer Hour from your own Twitter account. The bare minimum amount of time it takes is one hour – which is 9-10pm on your given week. However, tweeting about it in the days and hours preceding always increases engagement.
The hour itself is an open forum. Introduce yourself at 9pm, ask people what they’re drinking and enjoy the feedback on your samples.
The main thing to remember is to include the hashtag #CraftBeerHour on all your tweets!
The next steps...
Have a look for a date on the schedule and then get in touch for a chat. Please note that not all dates listed as “available” are in fact available. That’s because we generally only feature two breweries a month, with a reasonable space between them.
Once we’ve found a suitable date for you, I shall request £150 to reserve it. The outstanding £100 will then be due 7 days before your week hosting the hour.
Once the date is reserved, I shall send over a document for you for to work through, which provides me with all the necessary information to promote you both to the trade and to offer consumer retail options.
Hope to hear from you soon!