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18/08/2010 by

Gallo Taps Facebook & Twitter For Tequila Tour

Gallo Winery, handling US distribution is launching its Camarena Tequila this summer with a product sampling tour fueled by Facebook and Twitter. Since most brands have not used social media for sampling yet, I hope you read along…

The tour starts in California and Nevada. But since Californian law doesn’t allow free sampling of alcoholic beverages, Gallo’s emerging spirits division opted to deck out a food truck with the brand logo and hand out tacos made with meat marinated in the blue agave tequila.

That twist – tequila tacos instead of tequila margaritas – is positioned as a hook to generate buzz about the launch on food blogs and on the brand’s Facebook and Twitter profiles.

The tour went live in Los Angeles 1 June 2010. Working with marketing agency Rebel Industries, Los Angeles and Calhoun & Co. Communications in San Francisco, the launch effort will cover 120 stops in LA over about 10 weeks.

Based on online brand impressions, media coverage and other metrics, the initiative is expected to be adapted for other cities, says Gerard Thoukis, Gallo Spirits marketing director. If deemed successful, the approach will also be shared with other Gallo spirit and wine brands, say insiders.

With a limited budget, the company is seeking to give its target of 30-and-older spirits drinkers a “creative” way to touch and feel the tequila brand “and to encourage them to share and follow the new product with friends,” says Thoukis.

Research showed the target already has an affinity to Twitter and Facebook, so social media tools are being tapped to tell people about the truck’s schedule, share pictures of the tour, answer questions and solicit feedback.

A few weeks into the tour, the truck was outfitted with an iPad so visitors could follow the comments on Twitter as they munched their tacos. Ironically, “the new iPad has proven as much of a draw to passersby as the free tacos,” said Josh Levine, CEO of Rebel Industries.

Plans are also in the works to arrange the truck’s route based on locations suggested by users, Thoukis says. By early July, the truck had made about 60 stops and 100-300 people had been given tacos at each stop. The tour had, as of Friday, attracted 894 fans on Facebook and 318 followers on Twitter.

Done well, online social interactions can serve to bookend a physical event, say marketing experts. “Social media is the first step to the event, providing logistical details and the call to participate,” says Levine. After the physical experience, the online component then keeps the interaction going between brand “fans” and the marketer, he says.

“Keep in mind that the idea of ‘social’ has expanded among 25- to 35-year-olds,” he says. “Social parties and social media now go hand in hand; the lines are blurred.”

Source and full article by Joan Voight from ClickZ.


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