Brown Distributing Success Story



The Situation

Brown Distributing Company was founded in 1962 and the company has grown to become the Austin market leader in the beer industry, employing over 400 people, and carrying a wide variety of beer and non-alcohol increase in overall branding, on-site engagement, Endorsement Based Marketing (EBM), as well as various co-sponsored campaigns.

Brown Distributing Company is an Independent beer distributor. In the USA, there are over 3,000 such distributors employing more than 150,000 people. These distributors do more than buy, store, sell and deliver beer to customers. They also are small business owners active in their community, business and civic leaders, parents and philanthropists who give back to their community. They play a vital role in working to keep their communities safe by sponsoring a wide array of programs to promote responsible consumption, combat drunk driving and work to eliminate underage drinking.

Brown Distributing has always taken great pride in giving back to the communities in which they do business. Each year the company donates over a million dollars to various non-profit, civic, and educational organizations, while sponsoring over 500 charitable events throughout Central Texas.

Problems and Challenges

Brown Distributing was seeking a way to incorporate a social media strategy to improve the performance of the events by driving increased participation and brand awareness without increasing the event budget. In addition, the strategy needed to be simple to execute because the logistical burden of the events is always a challenge for the Brown Distributing marketing team.

The Solution

Brown Distribution engaged Social Flash Media for the perfect solution to dramatically improve their event performance. Social Flash Media (SFM) has created the first experiential marketing open range digital photo booth which is now widely viewed as the most advanced and popular solution in the market place. It communicates over WIFI or its built-in 4G connectivity capability to the Internet and can access dozens of different campaigns and provide instant photos electronically to smart phones and email.

Social Flash Media’s Photo Kiosk solution is simple to use, setup and can be managed remotely, removing the guessing game from the ground level. The open range Social Flash RANGE allows patrons to take and share photos from these events and share them live via Facebook, Twitter, MMS/Text and email. Brown gets the benefit of supporting their multiple brands by advertising on each shared photo, while creating a viral loop by tapping into the patron’s social networks through the systems integration with Facebook, Twitter, Email and Text/MMS.

There are many benefits for Brown Distribution:

  • Photo Booths have a magnetic draw for people. Much more exciting than giving away some marketing materials like everyone else, their Photo Booth becomes the center of attraction at many community events
  • When Charities and Non-Profits are looking for contributions for their annual fund-raising events, donating the use of the Photo Booth is a remarkably attractive proposition for most organizations. Brown Distribution can build a customized campaign for the non-profit and still assure their brand is properly represented
  • People tend to digitally share their Photo Booth photos on Facebook and Twitter. This causes many brand engagements where others see the branded photos, like the photos, re-share them, or comment on them. This Brand Engagement can be measured by Social Flash Media’s marketing platform to see the success of Brown’s viral reach.
  • The awareness of Brown Distribution rises dramatically with both brand engagements and with clicks over to their website. With their 190 promotions they have run, almost 30,000 people have clicked over to their website to learn more about their company.

Expanding Platform Use with the Mobile Solution

In 2017, Social Flash Media introduced an iPad/iPhone based MOBILE app, which is extremely complementary to their Social Flash RANGE kiosk. It allows Brown Distributing to go directly “into the field” for their community outreach events and capture experiences in a more natural setting than the photo booth. The Social Flash MOBILE solution aligns directly with the campaigns they have already designed and built as they reside in the Social Flash Media’s Marketing Cloud. These captured experiences can be sent to mobile phones and emails directly from the field in real-time just like the kiosk.


Since Brown Distributing began utilizing the Social Flash Marketing Platform, they have run roughly 190 separate promotions; community members have taken over 41,500 photos and had well over 250,000 digital brand engagements including almost 30,000 visitors to their website.

Analytics from January 2014 to September 2017

With SFM’s fully integrated software suite, Brown has been able to manage, monitor and even change their promotions on the fly. SFM’s attractive modern design supports multiple languages and delivers real-time monitoring, automated promotions and powerful analytics. This combines to enable Brown Distributing to offer branding by event, by label and by logo to resonate with specific market segments. For Brown, SFM creates viral loops on Facebook and Twitter and automates the onramps with their integrated platform, which dramatically expands their social media reach , often achieving over 2,000 digital engagements in a single day. Brown Distributing is now expanding their use of the Social Flash Media marketing platform by adding the iPad-based mobile product to complement it’s the Social Flash RANGE at community and non-profit outreach events.


Blair Knippa, the current Marketing Manager at Brown Distributing Company sums up her experience as follows:

“Our Social Flash Media Photo Booth has become an essential tool for the marketing team at Brown Distributing. It is perfect for any event activation, engaging consumers and reaching them through social media – which we all know is so important these days! It is a great way to gain an additional branding opportunity, while providing an interactive element that consumers want to participate in. It’s extremely versatile and allows us to include charity partners and other aspects of the event, since we are able to customize it internally.

We recently added the mobile app, which has provided an additional opportunity to engage consumers in a more flexible way. Overall the Social Flash Media Photo Booth has been an amazing asset, and has added endless value to every event and opportunity we bring it to.”


Lindsey Bradley, the previous Marketing Manager at Brown Distributing Company sums up her experience as follows:

“Since acquiring a Social Flash Media photo booth, we have truly taken our on-site marketing to a whole new level!  Whether it is a festival, sporting event, convention or bar promotion, the photo booth is always a hit, and a success in promoting our many beer brands.  The word has spread and it is now being requested through us from many of our partners!  The ability to customize each promotion with graphics, social media, and the interactivity elements is not only a huge added bonus, but it is extremely user friendly and easy to update.  Once the machine is set up in a few quick steps, you can honestly walk away and let it run itself.  It is also incredible to see photos being shared through social media, just as soon as they are taken.  The Social Flash Media team is so helpful in answering any questions we may have, no matter the time of day, and they are constantly striving to keep their units updated with the latest technology.  For anyone looking to more effectively get their brands in front of their target consumers, I would highly recommend Social Flash Media.”

Check out our Case Study with the Oasis Texas Brewing Company.

See Case Study

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