Social media use has surged in the past decade. Facebook has 900 million global users (Wall Street Journal, 2012). Recognizing that many of these 900 million users are potential customers (a search on Facebook in May 2012 revealed that there are 11.5 million US Facebook users that “like” wine, beer, or spirits), the wine industry has embraced social media (Vinography, 2012). Wineries are using social media as a tool to reach consumers and as a tool to reveal their brand quality and personality (The Tribune, 2011). In a survey of 118 of Texas’ 181 bonded wineries, nearly 80% of them were actively engaged in social media, with the majority not only using social media for customer connections, but also using social media for establishing industry connections and finding suppliers (Lau et. al, 2011). A survey by ABLE Social Media Marketing revealed that 94% of American wineries are on Facebook and 73% are on twitter (ABLE Social Media Marketing, 2012). They further found that 47% of wineries said that Facebook helps them generate sales and 72% sell wine on their websites.
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