Brahma Brewery’s pay-per-beer – what am I missing?

AB InBev’s Brahma Beer (nothing to with the 4-faced Indian God) had recently come up with an idea called ‘Pay-per-beer’. Turns out that like pay-per-view, something not very popular in India yet, Brahma, in association with the Brazilian pay channel Globosat, added the purchase of beer as an option in the same device where fans buy pay-per-view soccer – TV. So, the TV, instead of only selling streaming live video, also sold Brahma beer (custom-designed cans that include famous team colors/designs).

The idea is from Brahma’s agency, Africa. Watch the video.

Now, this sounds like quite a unique idea until you ask one question – where is the smartphone? The same device that already hosts many food-ordering apps (and may include alcohol-ordering apps too, in Brazil).

The video does show the smartphone, to make a corny joke! The voice-over asks when the empty fridge shelves are shown, without any beer: “The game is about the start! Where the hell is the beer? Aah, can’t happen in such connected times. What would technology do? Launch beer drones all around? It’s too high tech.”

Is using a familiar mobile food/beverage delivery service to order beer too high tech?

Later, the video shows the smartphone as the device that gets the confirmation after the beer has been ordered via the TV!

If the smartphone was right next to the person ordering via TV, as it always is, given how integral the smartphone is to the dual-screen movement, why wouldn’t he/she consider ordering the beer via that device?

Incidentally, how is the beer, ordered through the TV, delivered? It is delivered through a service called Ze Delivery.

AB InBev’s investment arm ZX Ventures took a stake in Zé Delivery, an on-demand beverage service in Brazil (AB InBev’s second-largest market after the United States), in 2016.

Now, Ze Delivery is a well-established service, with mobile apps and promises one-hour beer delivery! Imagine – Ze Delivery is partly owned by AB InBev and yet it doesn’t feature in this video only because they have a TV-innovation to sell!

And what is the ETA for beer delivery via TV?

What a surprise! The same 60 minute ETA for delivery, like Ze delivery’s promise!

Why would customers want to order beer on TV when they are already accustomed to ordering everything via their smartphones, that too when they are perhaps already ordering via the mobile apps of Ze Delivery? For context, Brazil ranks No.5 in the world when it comes to smartphone penetration!

The only possible benefit, if I can call it that, that I can see ordering via TV is that the payment is added to the cable bill. This, however, does not seem like a deal-breaker to me – if you are ordering via a mobile app, you have established payment options added to it already.

The video does mention that Brahma got 274,000 new pay-per-beer subscribers in 2 months. I’d love to know how many of these accounts were created just to try out the novelty idea (and perhaps a first order, if at all they did order).

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