Facebook connects the world. Or so the pro-Facebook thinking goes. I mean, what other technology affords you the ability to so effortlessly keep in touch with so many people. In many ways, Facebook (and other social media) have made our world smaller by artificially enhancing the number of connections that can be maintained with at least some degree of intimacy and depth.
But, of course, there are detractors. There are naysayers and Luddites. There are people who (*shudder*) don’t even have a Facebook account and believe themselves better off for it. The main complaint I hear from this crowd is that people spend so much time with their noses buried in the iDevice of their choosing, keeping up with their digital world, that they lose track of flesh and bone, concrete and steel, and all the other beauty that’s readily available in the tangible world that actually surrounds them.
Well now. That’s a real pickle.
I guess the answer would lie in finding ways to use a digital network like Facebook to influence behaviors and outcomes in the offline world. And it seems that the marketing geniuses at Anheuser-Busch feel the same.
According to this story from USA Today, the brewing giant is launching two new initiatives that essentially result in being able to buy someone a beer right through Facebook. The article reads:
“They [Facebook and Anheuser-Busch] are teaming up on two new programs, expected to eventually be rolled out nationwide next year: the Buds for Buds program lets you buy a friend a Budweiser, while the Bud Light Birthday promotion lets you earn a friend a free Bud Light on their birthday using Facebook posts.”
I, for one, think this is awesome. I think it’s a brilliant promotion that meets people where they are (on Facebook) and convinces them to come out into the sunshine and suck down some suds with real people.
“The program was born of A-B’s desire to remain relevant with millennial consumers of legal drinking age – and strengthen our position as the perfect beer for connecting with friends around any occasion,” said Lucas Herscovici, Anheuser-Busch vice president of consumer connections.
Well done A-B. I think this will have some legs. What do you guys think? Would you be happy to receive a beer through Facebook? Or do you think it’s weird to try to marry digital life with actual life in such a direct way? Tell us your thoughts on (where else?) our Facebook page!