Fanfare Mobile has launched Craft Beer Alerts. These targeted alerts allow craft beer fans to opt-in to their favorite styles, breweries or specific beers at their favorite business. When the beer they're interested in is available, they receive a message on their mobile phone.

Alerts can also be scheduled to go out at specific times; for example, at 4 p.m., inviting the customer to stop in on their way home from work.

Restaurants, bars, breweries and liquor stores can target messages based on specific interests, while also getting the benefit of receiving data about which beers are most popular with their customers.

The service, based on SMS text messaging and available at craftbeeralerts.com, is compatible with 99 percent of mobile phones on the market today.

According to the Brewers Association, microbreweries are opening at a rate of 5 per week, most having 15 beers in their annual portfolio with numerous experimental brews being released throughout the year. Many pizza concepts are taking advantage of the growing trend and adding craft beers to their menus on a rotating basis.

"With rotating taps, a particular beer might only show up in the local beer emporium every few months. When it does, fans of that beer want to know the moment it goes on tap so that they can taste a glass of their favorite brew or fill a growler to take home," said Fanfare Mobile CEO Michael Vincent. "Consider the even greater frenzy created by once a year releases, like Kalamazoo, Mich.-based Bell's Brewing's Hopslam. Some of these smaller beer kegs contain as little as 40 glasses of beer, so time is of the essence for the craft beer connoisseur. Seeing the news of that special beer in a Tweet or Facebook post even a few hours later could mean a missed opportunity."

Read more about mobile initiatives.

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