This weekend while I was hanging out at a bar, a bagpiper suddenly entered and two attractive women with a tray full of plastic shot glasses appeared in front of me.  Sweet, a drink promotion I thought to myself. Who doesn’t love a good free shot? That’s when the woman asked me: “would you like to try a sample of Bass?”


I’m sorry, a SAMPLE of Bass? So you mean I get to drink 1 oz of Bass for free? What is that horse  shit? If you are promoting a certain kind of hard liquor, give me a free shot. If you are promoting a certain kind of beer, give me a free beer. I know what Bass tastes like, and odds are, so does everyone in a bar on a Saturday night.  Do you really think anyone is going to taste the sample and say “huh, that lukewarm 1 oz serving reminded me how much I love Bass. I think I will now buy a Bass”? NO. No one is going to do that.  Giving us a sample of a beer we’ve all tasted before is pointless, and it’s not going to convince anyone not already drinking Bass to buy one.

However, giving someone a full beer for free can have the intended effect. You start drinking Bud Light/Miller Lite/Bass whatever, and over the course of a full beer you get accustomed to the taste and are likely to buy another one so you can keep drinking the same thing.   If you want me to look more favorably on the type of beer/liquor you are promoting, I damn well better get enough quantity (i.e. a shot or a full beer) to add to my buzz.  So note to Bass: terrible promotion. It was lame central and left me with a worse impression of Bass than I had before.  Note to beer promoters in general: don’t bother giving me a “sample” of your beer unless it’s some kind of gourmet, 10% alcohol beer I’ve never tried before.  If you’re not giving me a free beer, you’re wasting your and my time.

15 Responses

  1. Nick

    That’s the worst. Somebody at Bass should send you a 6 pack for your troubles.

    I know the economy is bad and all but come on… 1 ounce of beer.

    If I were that bar owner, I’d kick ’em to the curb.

  2. shatraw

    just a couple of weeks ago i was at a bar and ordered a brooklyn lager. two women turned to me and were like “let us buy you that drink” and i was like “huh?” and they said “it’s a promotion. here’s a t-shirt, too. and a hat.” and while i wasn’t as flattered as i was when they offered me the drink, i did get a free beer and a t-shirt!

    i ditched the hat.

    that’s how beer promos are done.

  3. Andy

    Yeah, free beer provided by a sexy girl, rough. Real rough. Stop being a baby. Sure it could have been a larger portion, but who cares! You came away with a little beer and an interaction with a hot girl!

  4. shatraw

    andy, are you aware just how pathetically small a single ounce serving of beer is?

    also, she was a beer promoter, so how sexy could she really have been?

  5. Eick

    Andy “Free beer” to me constitutes at least half a beer. Unless I’m doing a power hour, a shot of beer isn’t doing shit for me. In fact, I’d say it wasn’t even the size of a shot, it was just a tiny taste on the bottom of the plastic shot glass.

    Were the girls sexy? Meh, they were decent. But it’s not like they were stopping to chat me up, they were clearly running a tight circuit of all the bars in the area.

    So as to your “who cares” comment about the fact that it could have been a larger portion – I care! Don’t waste my time with a minuscule amount of beer.

  6. Miles

    Here’s the problem with free beer…it robs the bar of business. For every free beer they give out, the bar and bartenders should get paid. Otherwise, why let the promoters in? Still, I agree…an ounce is pathetic.

  7. Cary

    “real beer provided by sexy girls,” “power hour,” “free beer?”. woof. a lot of surly testosterone on the site these days.

    a shot of beer is like half a mustache. it just doesn’t look or feel right.

  8. Loretta

    I’m a barmaid at Smiles in Ledgewood, NJ. When we are asked to promote a new beer we comp that whole beer. The brewery gives us that beer to give away in the hopes of gaining a new customer. So guys, come on bye. Tell them you saw it here and I’ll buy you that beer or shot myself. We have the sexiest dancers, the hottest barmaids and the most happening spot in New Jersey. Check us out! you won’t be disappointed. XO


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