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Best Buy Goes Bar Hopping

The No. 1 electronics emporium is hoisting more than a few this fall, but the glass it is raising isn’t the kind you drink from.

Instead, the promo-savvy CE chain has embarked on a nationwide 4K pub crawl in which it installs a trio of Ultra HD TVs at popular watering holes to acquaint patrons and local press with the technology.

The 55-inch sets, from LG, Samsung and Sony, stream native 4K content through UltraFlix and are accompanied by a Best Buy Blue Shirt, games and gift cards to create an event-like atmosphere.

Abbey Theiler, a Best Buy publicist following the Northeast leg of the tour, said the UHD models are set up near the bars’ own TVs, and are an eye-opener for attendees who hadn’t yet witnessed 4K.

The 28-stop bar hop began Sept. 18 at Stats Bar and Grill in Atlanta (for the Falcons-Buccaneers game) and winds up Oct. 27 at the Bungalow Lakehouse in Washington, D.C. (for the Cowboys-Redskins match).

The tour dovetails with a three-month series of in-store tutorials at select Best Buy locations where newly renovated home theater departments feature Ultra HD “experience” shops by Samsung and Sony and endcaps by LG.

The show of vendor lovin’ may have miffed some independent A/V dealers, but most say they welcome the attention the campaigns are bringing to the category in advance of the holidays.

As for Best Buy, while the company may still be in turnaround mode on multiple fronts, it clearly got its mojo back when it comes to consumer marketing. And I’ll drink to that.