Earlier this year I had the pleasure (yes, pleasure) of researching wine laws and social media for Vineyard & Winery Management Magazine (my third article for them). What I discovered was that many of the articles on the subject of wine law and social media didn't really answer the questions that a social media marketer really wanted to know... AKA Can I tweet a restaurant? Can I like a photo from a customer at a wine shop? etc etc.
So I asked questions that I, as a marketer really wanted answered. What came out was a ton of information that shed some light on what is allowed and what currently isn't when it comes to social media for wineries.
At a glance:
+ Federal tied-house laws were created after the repeal of Prohibition to keep big alcohol producers from dominating retailers.
+ Producers are prohibited from giving anything of value to a retailer, including free advertising. Social media is considered free advertising.
+ Wineries cannot promote any single alcohol retailer over another, including restaurants, wine shops, grocery stores, hotels, airlines and golf clubs.
+ Conduct an audit of your winery’s marketing, social media and event efforts, and plan content to ensure that it meets regulations.