View Full Version : Tandleman's Beer Blog - A Tale of Two Bloggers

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07-11-2014, 09:39
Visit the Tandleman's Beer Blog site (http://tandlemanbeerblog.blogspot.com/2014/11/a-tale-of-two-bloggers.html)

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Rg4SbJxQ6cI/VFyWY14uErI/AAAAAAAAF6A/OuzG9MKSIT4/s1600/beerforthat.png (http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Rg4SbJxQ6cI/VFyWY14uErI/AAAAAAAAF6A/OuzG9MKSIT4/s1600/beerforthat.png)I was invited to the launch (or should that be revitalisation) of the new "Let There Be Beer Campaign", but couldn't go due to other commitments that meant I'd be in the Grim North instead of Millbank. Others went and liked what they saw. One or two most certainly didn't like what they saw, so much so, they were still spitting hops days later and could only write about it after they'd calmed down. Interesting stuff.

The focus now is "There's a Beer for That". Two bloggers I like and respect wrote about it. One, Matt (http://totalales.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/theres-beer-for-that.html), was in the "Incandescent With Rage" Corner" and t'other Ed (http://edsbeer.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/its-not-about-craft.html#comment-form), in the "Seems All Right to Me" Corner. Other bloggers (I like them too) have also written about it - for example Pete Brown (http://petebrown.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/let-there-be-beer-lets-start-again.html) has done so and was broadly in favour, while Beersoakedboy (http://beersoakedboy.wordpress.com/2014/11/03/downton-abbey-and-theres-a-beer-for-that/) was agin it on the whole, but in quite measured tones, seemingly more concerned about lazy stereotypes and likely poor impact, than Matt, whose main and recurring theme was that it sat on the backs of the smaller craft brewers in order to get a better view. "It's the better that the people behind this campaign are worried about, craft beer is bucking the industry trend and growing at an exponential rate........... Craft beer hasn't just got its foot in the door to the mainstream, it's already in the room throwing a party and it brought beer. So why do we need There's a Beer for That? Well, multinational corporations really don't like it when small businesses infringe on their market share. That's pretty clear. Craft doesn't need the big brewers, so bog off.

Of course the argument that advertising such as this is kind of lowest common denominator stuff can easily be made, but advertising does work, though only the very cleverest of advertising can make those who do not wish to engage, engage. Nonetheless if the phrase "There's a Beer for That" sticks in the mind of those sitting on the sofa with a cup of tea or a glass of wine and makes them think of beer, wouldn't you think that a good thing? I think I would. On the other hand though I take Matt's point about the overwhelming wish seems to be for those funding the campaign to be the biggest beneficiaries of it. Mind you, it would be somewhat remarkable if they didn't. It is maybe worth pointing out that few of us came to craft beer by starting out that way. Most of us started out with a pint of Harp, or Carling and moved on. Or didn't. And that's the point. Craft may be rising, but it doesn't rule the world just yet and is for most a destination that they may never consider visiting, not a journey's start. Most beer drinkers drink the good old cooking stuff and why shouldn't they? Matt's love of craft beer is legendary, but he wears his craft credentials on his sleeve. Not that that's a bad thing. He probably hides it less well than those that funded the Let There Be Beer Campaign hide their intentions. But like them it does colour his view somewhat. They are maybe not so different then in some ways? Matt certainly isn't the target audience.

So what does Ed say? He has only a few well reasoned paragraphs, culminating in this " I have to say I'm quite pleased to see a generic campaign to promote beer." He gets far fewer comments, but John Clarke, quite a craft beer supporter, weighs in by saying "I have to say that I'm a little bemused by all this outrage. If it's a generic promotion to raise the profile of beer does it really matter who funds it?" That would I suppose only be true if you don't mind what beer people drink, as long as it is beer. I'm not sure that's the message I'm getting when I read what Matt has to say. "People are drinking better etc." Is it that old beer snob thing again? I hope not. The truth is, that for most people, "There's a Beer for That" is unlikely to mean craft, so to that extent Matt has a fair point. An analogy is that over the years, when campaigning for real ale (and it still is true), that as an advocate for cask, you have to accept that your view of beer is a minority one. Craft keg is no different.

On the balance, Ed has the right of it. More people drinking beer is good for everyone. When the craft beer movement can throw ten million quid at it, they can do it their way. Until then, let's get them to drink beer first, then worry about them drinking "better" beer later.

This isn't a go at Matt by the way. His passion for beer - craft beer in particular -makes his views worth commenting on.

More... (http://tandlemanbeerblog.blogspot.com/2014/11/a-tale-of-two-bloggers.html)