Facebook takes the issue of underage drinking seriously. The site requires that all alcohol-related advertisements use tools and demographic targeting options to restrict the ad’s visbility to users who are over the legal drinking age.
While that statement is targeted to “Facebook ads,” it also applies to any alcohol-related wall “posts.” As a consequence, many operators have stayed away from promoting alcohol beverages on Facebook. This is unfortunate, as adding alcohol beverage posts to your restaurant’s Facebook page has many benefits, including:
• Creates excitement about beverage products/recipes/specialties.
• Generates quick feedback so you know what’s important to your customers.
• Promotes beverage offers and contests.
• Tests new beverage recipe ideas.
• Keeps your finger on the pulse of beverage trends.
According to our surveys and discussions with restaurant chain operators, many want to know how to promote alcohol beverages and stay within Facebook policy or the law. Here are some guidelines:
1. General Rule: What can be printed legally to promote alcohol also can be posted on Facebook. Never use the words “free” or “complimentary” when promoting alcohol, and check state and federal beverage laws before proceeding.
2. Pair Beverage with Food: Post a picture of an appetizer/entree and a beverage. Work with your chef and lead bartender to ensure proper taste pairings.
3. Show Off: Post an invite visitors to extol the virtues of the Margarita and invite them to become fans at the same time!
4. Educate and Offer Value: Convey product education about alcohol beverages and promote the purchase by posting a value.
5. Keep It Simple: Buffalo Wild Wings got 6,000+ responses simply by asking people to “Like this if you could use a Guinness now.”
6. Attach a Video: People love to see videos, but make sure it’s short (2 minutes), informative and entertaining.
7. Facebook and Website Integration: Here is a post describing Margarita Mondays. If a visitor clicks on the ad, they are sent to the main website for additional detail.
8. Beverage Surveys: Asking fans to fill out surveys gets a remarkable response rate. Use surveys for fun or have fans vote on a drink-recipe name for the next summer feature. Don’t forget to post the results of the survey!
Don’t let the fear of the legalities or regulations surrounding alcohol beverage promotion or misunderstanding of the Facebook policy keep you from integrating beverage into your social-media marketing tactics. Yours is a food and beverage company, so make sure to tell your visitors about the virtues of both through all of your marketing outlets. Follow these eight tips and enjoy the benefits!
If you want more insights on presenting your alcohol beverages program via Facebook, contact Dronkers Solutions at [email protected].