With Monday's Twitter misadventures—including imprudent advice to “eat ass”—Pabst appears to have proven that the old axiom of any publicity being good publicity still rings true in 2022, at least in the short term.
According to data firm ShareThis, which monitors digital behavior, Monday’s tweets—which Pabst said were posted by an employee with “poor judgment”—accompanied an increase in engagement of 63% vs. the last three days in December. This was primarily triggered by a 95% increase in search for Pabst and related content, along with a 3% increase in clicks—or visits to Pabst’s online properties—and a 2% increase in content shared about the brand.
Media outlets ranging from Forbes to WGN covered the incident, bringing attention to a brand whose marketing budget cannot match those of bigger beer competitors. It's also worth noting that Pabst has a history of eschewing mainstream marketing tactics while appealing to hipsters and college students, allowing it to more easily get away with such low-brow humor than other brands.
But any positive boost, however unlikely, could be fleeting. Benj Steinman, president of beer trade publication Beer Marketer’s Insights, said he was doubtful that the tweets would have lasting effects and simply proved “that anything can blow up on social media and provide a burst of attention that is utterly inane.”