Developing a Top-Shelf Retail Strategy

What Your Brand Need to Know Before Distribution

As an alcohol brand founder, you’ve likely spent months – if not years – perfecting your product. You’ve worked hard to develop the perfect recipe, bottle design, and marketing messaging. Now, it’s time to take that effort further and ensure you have a successful retail strategy in place. In this blog post, we’ll discuss critical considerations when planning a comprehensive retail strategy before you secure distribution.

Make sure your packaging is on point

Product packaging plays a pivotal role in shaping your brand identity and establishing a strong presence in the market. However, it’s not just about the design and aesthetics. With the latest trend of sustainability in packaging materials, consider packaging that is not only visually appealing but also responsible and eco-friendly. Moreover, using a dynamic QR code on the label or outer packaging allows for active tracking of scan data and changing the destination link without changing the printed QR code on your package or label. From simple tools like QR Code Generator to more robust platforms like Blue Bite, Beaconstac, or Brij, there’s an option for any budget.

Get to know your consumer before launching with ecomm data

When it comes to launching a spirits brand, it’s important to have a solid understanding of your consumer before diving headfirst into the retail market. By utilizing ecomm data to launch directly to consumers, you’ll have the distinct advantage of gleaning invaluable insights into your customer base. This includes demographic data, purchase behavior, and ecomm platform usage. Armed with this information, you’ll be better equipped to identify the specific markets you should focus on for retail and optimize your advertising campaigns for maximum engagement and reach.

Grab attention with your retail POP materials

In the crowded retail space, it’s essential to grab shoppers’ attention with your Point of Purchase (POP) materials. Bright colors, striking product imagery, prominent logos, and large print can help your POP materials command attention from browsers. Create a memorable slogan or tagline that resonates with your target audience and conveys your brand’s message. Contrasting shapes can add visual interest and help draw the eye to your display. Location is critical, so aim for an end cap, eye level, and high-traffic areas. To encourage engagement, consider using a dynamic QR code and tie it to a promotion, contest, or discount. With the right combination of these elements, you can create irresistible POP displays that stop shoppers in their tracks.

Track your Sales Lift

To maximize your sales and marketing efforts, it’s essential to establish a solid sales baseline first. This baseline will give you a reliable reference point to measure your future performances. Once you have that baseline, you will leverage all available data to calculate your “Sales Lift” (Actual Sales minus Baseline Sales) so you can have a finger on the pulse of your business. Tracking your Sales Lift and performing regular retail audits to assess how your marketing materials are displayed will help you gauge the effectiveness of your in-store promotions and overall marketing efforts. With consistent optimization of these strategies, you can take your sales performance to new heights and hit all your business goals.

Off-premise sampling activations

Off-premise sampling activations are a fantastic way to boost brand awareness and gain valuable customer feedback. By promoting your brand at liquor and grocery stores, you can reach a wider audience and more effectively gauge customer interests and preferences. Furthermore, retailers are more inclined to support brands that invest in field marketing and drive traffic to their locations.

Providing a simple one-sheeter PDF document that shows the metrics and results from promotional efforts like off-site sampling activations can go a long way towards deepening the vital relationship between you and your retail partners. Before you launch new territories or start discussions with new retailers, you will be one step ahead of the competition if you can share a well-thought-out marketing plan supporting your brand’s entry into the market.

Plan and execute your Retail Pull Strategy

A successful Retail Pull Strategy is essential for mid-sized brands to increase product sales. However, once the product is competing on the shelf/back bar, the most significant challenge becomes how to capture consumers’ attention and stay top of mind for retailers and accounts. If you don’t already have your Retail Pull Strategy in place before you hit the shelves, it’s already too late.

Some of the best tactics to drive retail pull are:

  • Using first-party customer data to trigger highly relevant and timely email messaging
  • Interest and location-based paid social media ads for awareness and lead generation
  • Contextual, targeted ads served in consumer shopping list apps
  • Geofencing of actual consumers at prominent retailers in your market

These are a few practical ways to ensure the product reaches the right customers at the right time. Strong marketing campaigns enable brands to spark curiosity, generate awareness, and drive growth by standing out in a crowded market. By utilizing these strategies, mid-sized brands can confidently increase sales and become well-known and respected in the market.

Developing a top-shelf retail strategy before distribution will set you up for long-term success. By taking into account the tips outlined in this post, you will be well on your way to creating a successful brand launch. If you’re looking for a trusted partner to guide your brand through the complex waters of beverage alcohol distribution, we’re ready to make your brand’s strategic vision a reality. Call us today, and together, we’ll take your spirits brand to new heights.