Unleashing the potential of the humble pub quiz

By Tony Jennings

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags National pub quiz Pub quiz

Tony Jennings: "I believe that the day of the national pub quiz is dawning"
Tony Jennings: "I believe that the day of the national pub quiz is dawning"
Until we launched our Great Budweiser Budvar London Pub Quiz in October, I never realised what a fantastic platform the quiz offers for the host to get the customers in, and for us to reach them

Although the concept has been around since the mid-1970s, helped along by the arrival of Trivial Pursuit in 1982, I’m now convinced the concept hasn’t even begun to realise its potential as a pub-filler.

There are plenty of pub quizzes, from easy to difficult, going on in various shapes and forms. Some involve an outlet holding its own weekly event, others operate in a league.

Although there is a lot of it going on, the pub-quiz world is fragmented.


Based upon the enormous enthusiasm that has been shown for our fairly cerebral event, I feel certain that there is a real opportunity here to create something of continuing value for hosts, as well as their demonstrably quiz-smitten customers.

Really, what is needed is a beer brands-backed national quiz event in which pub teams and their locals could compete on a regional scale, eventually evolving a premier league to operate at a cup-final level.

Sponsorship and investment by drinks brands such as ours would be essential to make it work. The publicity alone for each participating outlet would be worth it, not to mention the local support for the outlet that it engenders.


I know this because of our headline sponsorship of the Publican’s Morning Advertiser’s Top 50 Gastropubs Awards.

This generates tremendous local and regional interest, and I believe that participation in a national pub quiz would make an even bigger impact locally.
It also offers a painless way of imparting generic brewing and specific brand knowledge.

For instance, one section of our pub quiz was devoted to our brand and it has been interesting and gratifying to see how much of that information has stuck. You’ve got to make it interesting and challenging, though.

For example, questions such as, “What has General Custer got in common with Budweiser Budvar?” have proved to be real show-stoppers.

I believe that the day of the national pub quiz is dawning due in no small part to the emergence of well-informed beer drinkers in larger and larger numbers. These are thinking people for whom the exercise of the ‘little grey cells’ is an important part of their leisure experience.

Mobilise them with a national pub quiz and that will give us one of the finest links between pub, brand and community that we could wish for.

Tony Jennings is chief executive at Budvar UK

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