Today I will discuss a topic I discussed in (the newest) episode 007 of the MAFFEO DRINKS Podcast that I share here for you: Farming Sales in Bars.

‎The MAFFEO DRINKS Podcast: 007 | Farming Sales: how to drive sales velocity in bars after you sold the first bottle | Part 2/2 of the Interview with Mike McGrail from the Drinks Noise Podcast (Edinburgh, UK) on Apple Podcasts
‎Show The MAFFEO DRINKS Podcast, Ep 007 | Farming Sales: how to drive sales velocity in bars after you sold the first bottle | Part 2/2 of the Interview with Mike McGrail from the Drinks Noise Podcast (Edinburgh, UK) - May 13, 2023

One of the biggest challenges for new drinks brands is what to do after they have managed to build demand across a few bars in a city and get the agreement from the bar manager to take stock of our product. It's important to consider how many bottles we expect them to take - one, two, or even a case.  

In sales for small brands, transactions typically start with just one bottle. You might be lucky if they're confident enough to take two at first. It's crucial to help them sell your brand by encouraging them not only to fall in love with it but also to move through their inventory quickly so that they can order more. Always keep in mind selling the first bottle with the second one in mind.

1. Focus on one simple drinking occasion and make it tangible

Brands must create a simple message that reaches consumers and the industry. Bartenders should understand clearly what type of drinks to use the brand, and consumers should get how the product can be used in real-life situations while maintaining an aspirational image.

Unfortunately, many brands rely on cliches in their marketing without explaining how their products can be incorporated into daily life. That makes bottles collect dust on the shelf, in bars, and at home.

The key is creating relatable content connecting with consumers' (real) lives while acknowledging the brand’s origins.

2. Follow up after your first delivery.

Whether selling directly or through a wholesaler (through a transfer order), following up on deliveries and ensuring that your brand doesn't get stuck in storage unnoticed due to staff changes or lack of communication among team members is essential. The smallest details often significantly impact whether a brand sells successfully.

What is a Transfer Order?
When your sales team is selling indirectly they only agree on a sale, but they don't take care of the dispatch of the actual bottle. Your team may place the order on behalf of the bar or let the bar do the order through their preferred wholesaler.

The transfer order ensures your team knows if the bar has ordered/received the bottle. It specifies the quantity and details of the products to be transferred, such as item codes, descriptions, and quantities.

It helps ensure proper tracking and accountability during the transfer process. The wholesaler then coordinates the logistics and shipment of the requested products to the bar.

Building relationships and trust takes time, so don't rush this process. Focus on developing an appealing taste profile for your brand and communicate it effectively throughout the value chain – from salespeople to bartenders.

3. Skip POS Material and spend A&P money wisely.

Avoid spending too much money upfront on promotional items like branded T-shirts or beer mats; instead, focus on building your niche market organically and growing within that space based on customers' preferences without pushing aggressive marketing tactics onto them.

4. Make your sales targets simple to understand.

Thinking bottom-up when launching a new brand in the market is important. Selling 1000 cases is an overwhelming target. If you flip it and think bottom-up, all of a sudden, it becomes much more achievable. Still difficult, but it becomes numbers that your brain can manage. Selling four cocktails per night in 50 bars is much simpler for your brain.

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