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4 Online Marketing Strategies for Local Breweries & Wineries

For local businesses, digital marketing goes beyond the website.

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When your craft beverage business first opened its doors, you probably set out with a goal to generate sales and build a reputable customer base. While you may have relied on word of mouth to get prospects excited about the opening, that word of mouth will only last so long. In most cases, your winery or brewery needs to invest in additional forms of marketing, such as search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click advertising, and social media to become known in the local community.

But how do you know which marketing efforts will be the most fruitful for your craft beverage business? By taking a localized approach to your online marketing strategy, you’ll specifically target prospective customers within a certain radius of your business — helping you build a strong customer base with members of your community. To help you create a strategic (and effective!) localized online marketing campaign, we’ve put together a list of four online marketing strategies for local breweries and wineries. 

Follow these steps to improve your local brewery or winery’s online marketing efforts.

1) Claim & Optimize Your Google Business Profile

First and foremost, you need to claim your Google Business Profile. If you haven’t, you are doing a disservice to your business! As a local brewery or winery, you want potential customers to find you when searching for local watering holes. Where do most people turn to when looking for restaurants, breweries, wineries, or bars to visit? Google. If your craft beverage business isn’t visible on Google, you’re minimizing the chance of having new customers find you online. 

“Local Pack” of breweries that appears for the search “breweries near me” for a user near Raleigh, NC

You may be wondering how Google Business plays into your visibility on Google. If you’ve ever searched “breweries near me” or “wineries in X,” you’ve likely seen a list of three to five local businesses that appear at the top of the search engine results page. This is referred to as Google’s “Local Pack.” To appear in the Local Pack, your business listing must be claimed (at a minimum), and the more information you fill out increases the likelihood of being displayed. Once your GMB listing is claimed, add all the relevant business information, including your business category, address, hours, and phone number. 

2) Focus on Local Search Engine Optimization

The most important thing to keep in mind when filling out your Google Business Profile is that all of the business information should be consistent on all online directories. Google often rewards local businesses that have a consistent name, address, and phone number (NAP) across the internet. If your brewery’s name appears differently on Google than Yelp or another online directory, your online listing could be “dinged” and negatively impact your website’s ability to rank on the first page of Google or appear in the Local Pack.

Take the time to review your online presence across all reputable online directories, such as Yelp, Trip Advisor, and YellowPages. Is your business listing claimed on each of these directories? Are the name, address, and phone number consistent across the board? If there are any discrepancies, you want to fix those ASAP!

3) Get Reviews & Testimonials

How many times have you looked up a restaurant on Google or Yelp to check the reviews before visiting? This is exactly what your customers are doing too! According to Podium, 58% of consumers would pay more to support a company with good reviews. But even good reviews won’t get you far if you don’t have enough of them.

83% of consumers agree or “somewhat agree” that reviews need to be relevant and recent to make a difference to their purchasing decisions. Data from Podium via

Think about it this way — if an individual searches “wineries near me,” they’re going to compare the options to one another. If Winery A has five reviews with a 5-star rating and Winery B has 1,128 reviews with a 4.6-star rating, which do you think they are more likely to choose? Although your winery may have a 5-star rating, the lack of reviews may lead them to select the winery with more reviews. When it comes to Google or Yelp reviews, both quantity and quality are equally important.

While some patrons may organically leave reviews for your business, it doesn’t hurt to ask. If you know a customer is happy, you can ask them directly if they wouldn’t mind taking the time to leave a review. You can also include a note asking customers to leave a review near the register or on their receipt. You may even want to include a QR code that they can scan and go directly to Google! However, you mustn’t incentivize your customers to leave a review as this is against Google’s guidelines and can result in a suspension of your Google Business Profile.

4) Show Your Personality on Social Media

Although securing a spot on the first page of Google should be a top priority, you don’t want to forget about social media — because that is where a lot of your customers spend their free time! Think about where your target customers spend their time browsing. Does your customer base skew younger? You may want to create profiles on TikTok or Instagram. Or, you may want a well-rounded approach where your brewery or winery is on all the major social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter. Creating social media profiles for your local craft beverage business not only makes you more accessible but helps you build a personal connection with your customers.

While your business can benefit from paid marketing tactics on social media, the heart and soul of your social media accounts should be focused on sharing your voice and personality through your page. When customers tag your location or business, reshare their content and interact with them on social media, and with permission, you can even post high-quality photos your customers take while sipping on your latest brews directly to your feed. The more active you are on social media, the more likely your customers are to share your local brewery or winery on their social media accounts — getting your business in front of an audience that may not have otherwise heard about you! 

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