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Twitter Allows Alcohol

Twitter Allows AlcoholWhile Twitter may not be providing the alcohol, they may soon be allowing alcohol marketers to jump on board the 140-character highway.

Due to age-verification rules, Twitter has always fallen behind Facebook when it came to being a means for alcohol marketers to, well, market. With Facebook, users must enter their age while signing up for an account, so alcohol marketers already know who they can and cannot market to.

Since there is not a great deal of information needed about a person in order to join Twitter, the social network doesn’t have the same type of advantage. Even to be absolutely sure, some alcohol-related Facebook pages would ask the user to verify their age before giving them access to the page. This seemed impossible on Twitter…until now.

Right now, a new tool is being tested that will allow alcohol marketers on Twitter to check ages. Twitter has recently partnered with BuddyMedia, a social media management company, who is creating a new tool to help bring age verification to Twitter. As of now, the tool is already created but is being tested on a few small groups in order to work out any kinks. The launch date of the tool depends heavily on the testing reviews.

How is the new tool going to work?

The concept is pretty simple. Any user who clicks on a brand because they want to follow it will be sent a direct message telling the user that their age needs to be verified first. In the direct message, users will find a link to a website that requests the user to enter their date of birth. The site even gives users 24 hours to fill it out (even though they don’t need that much time). And the best part is that once a user has verified their age for one alcohol-related brand, they don’t have to do it again in order to follow other alcohol brands.

Why is Twitter making the changes?

The FederalTradeCommission is realizing that digital is the place to market, and so they want to incorporate data from alcohol users in order to perform specific studies. Plus, many large names in the alcohol industry have stayed away from Twitter since they couldn’t verify the ages of their audience (and being caught marketing these products to underage individuals has a hefty price tag), so Twitter wants to get ahold of these companies in order to generate some more revenue.

Have alcohol brands marketed on Twitter in the past?

Some have. MillerCoors tried their own age-verification tool on Twitter and found success. They are even paying for promotional tweets and to be placed in the “Who to Follow” section of Twitter. HeinekenUSA ran three paid Twitter ads for Heineken and one for Dos Equis.

Since it is still new, though, many companies and brands are still figuring it all out. But once the new age verification process is rolled out, it may bring a whole new onslaught of users.

 

Patty Rogers is a writer and SEO consultant.  She likes to write in a clear, concise manner and gives tips to other social media & SEO consultants.


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