94% of American wineries surveyed by ABLE Social Media Marketing are on Facebook and 73% are on Twitter. The study, done in December 2011, shows that American wineries are active in social media and that it’s producing results. 47% of US wineries said that Facebook helps them generate sales (72% sell wine on their website). While this study focuses on wineries only, companies in other industries should take note of these results.

The study by ABLE covered both American and French wineries, but the French statistics aren’t as impressive. For example only 53% of French wineries surveyed are on Facebook, compared to 94% of US wineries.

Facebook and/or Twitter?

Drilling down into the Facebook statistics some more, 50% of American wineries (but only 18% of French wineries) have more than 500 fans on Facebook. ABLE identified two reasons for the success of American wineries on Facebook:

  • 49% of American wineries (19% of French) have a dedicated marketing manager who creates and publishes content on social networks.
  • 30% of American wineries have been using Facebook ads to promote their winery (only 7.6% of French wineries).

Aside: 3.8% of American wineries listed “my children” as their Facebook managers. Goes to show that family ties in SMB’s is still important!

It’s interesting to see the wine industry using Facebook and Twitter for different reasons. According to the study, Facebook is the superior social media platform for generating sales (48% for Facebook vs. 28% for Twitter). But Twitter is seen as better at capturing media attention (53% for Twitter vs. 32% for Facebook). That kind of statistic is good news for Facebook’s IPO investors, who’ve been spooked by the media into thinking that Facebook will have trouble growing revenue.

72% of American wineries and 69% of French wineries say they will be increasing their activity on Facebook in 2012. Twitter isn’t seen as so important, with 61% of American wineries and 45% of French wineries saying they will increase their activity on Twitter in 2012.

Other Social Networks

Another interesting statistic is which wine-focused social networks US wineries use. Snooth is the most popular, with 33% of respondents on there.

Note that nearly 53% aren’t on any niche wine network. I’m somewhat surprised by that, because I’m a user of a couple of wine apps – Snooth and Drync – and I’d like to think that wineries are active on them. They should be updating their data on the popular apps and trying to woo the most passionate wine consumers (because connoisseurs are more likely to be using these niche apps than other people).

As for other types of social networks, nearly 54% of American wineries have claimed or created a profile on Yelp, 40% on Google Places and 30% on Foursquare.

285 American wineries and 243 French ones participated in the study. The full report is embedded below.