Mind The Gap

  • Where’s your gap?
  • Where’s the ‘be careful’ zone in marketing your beers?
  • Are you minding the gap?

The gap is an idiom, according to UsingEnglish.com.

“...to warn passengers to be careful when leaving the tube or train as there is quite a distance between the train and the platform.”

Does the gap then need to be literal? I think we all have gaps in different places in our lives, businesses and so forth for a variety (infinite probably) of reasons.

Gaps aren’t the enemy. It’s minding them that you need to pay attention to. When you mind the gap, you’re paying attention to and tending to what needs consideration.

Don’t gap out. Gap in. Pay attention and it’ll pay off.

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31…and Counting

When’s the last time you said to yourself, “Self, today I’m going to write down all the reasons/catergories of/for X.”

Just like I stated (and started)  at the opening of my presentation at the recently passed Craft Brewers Conference on developing & serving the female craft beer enthusiast, I did and continue to categorize. And we’re up to 31 categories and counting, folks.

Jody & I enjoying beer outside at Bridger Bowl

Jody & I enjoying beer outside at Bridger Bowl

Thirty one. Whoa.

A category that women consider when interacting, partaking, participating, and enjoying beer can be a wide one or a narrow one. Regardless, we have 31 so far.

This goes back to my ever present hammering of Know Your Market. You have to ask Why when you ask for an opinion. It can go something like this.

  • Q “When do you drink beer?”
  • A “At dinner/Lunch/the park/etc.”
  • Q “Why then/there?”
  • A “Because I like beer with my evening meal/because a refreshing session style beer  in the middle of the day is an affordable treat I enjoy/because I enjoy drinking out of doors/etc.”

The Why will tell you waaaaaay more information that you can apply than simply asking the question. In fact if you don’t ask the Why, then you’re wasting everyone’s time.

Ask. then ask Why.

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Queue Aretha, Please

WWAD

What would Aretha drink if she based her beer choices on respect?

Personally, I have no idea if she partakes of a tasty beer now and then. What I do want to connect here is respect to beer. Beer to respect.

In conducting research on marketing beer to women, over and over and over I hear that the market segment, women here, want some respect.

And why not?! Women make up 50.9% of the population.

Historically, it’s been women women women who brew beer. It’s still true in most other parts of the world (sans America). It’s a household task (careful – I’m most certainly not equating housework with women here). It simply falls into the duty breakdown.

So where the heck did the idea come from that women don’t like or want to drink beer? Why aren’t they a much more respected market share?

Probably several reasons. I’m not an historian, like my friend Maureen is, so I’ll forgo that for now.

What I want to point out today is that when you respect your existing and potential clients, all of them – women included – and you respect your beer, then you’ve got a winning, profitable combination. (If this sounds like a no brainer, why aren’t more breweries already successfully marketing to women??)

RESPECT. Treat them both ala the golden rule. And you will reign supreme.

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Beer Racism

the-next-glass-of-beerthe-next-glass-of-beerI agree with Charlie. It’s what’s in the glass.

So if it’s what’s in the glass, why are so many people racist beer drinkers? Why are they prejudging the brew on it’s color?

How about flavor? Texture? Aroma?

Are you pre-judging your beer? Worse, are you pre-judging someone else drinking  a beer based on the color of the beer they have chosen?

Prejudging…prejudice… see the connection??

One of the biggest misnomers out there is that  dark = heavy. WRONG! Ask Chris O’Brien.

Close your eyes and enjoy your beer. When you open them again, see the world of beer differently.

Be blind to the color, be open to the beer in the glass.

Photo courtesy of Flickr by Elitsa

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What Are You Doing?

What are you doing to authentically attract female market share to your beers?

p1020002Here are some questions and pointers to get you going in the right direction today.

1. Above all, be yourself when you do any kind of marketing. Sounds like a no brainer? Well, don’t change your colors, your tagline, your ‘youness’ – be you. Authenticity is enormous and critically important.

2. Where is your brewery or brewpub located? Where can women find your beers? Who lives in the neighborhood? Who are you trying to attract and why? Does the ‘who’ align with the ‘how’ you’re doing it?

3. What do you have available? Are your staff really knowledgeable and up to date on what the heck you make? When’s the last time you had refresher training?

4. Do you know your market? (this should be number one ALL THE TIME.)

When you have figured out your market share, then you can pursue it. Before that, get to know it. There are multiple ways to do this. Find someone (like a consultant who specializes in this area for instance) who can help properly id your market, or what market share you want to pursue and how it aligns – or doesn’t – with you.

I’m guessing you didn’t choose to buy inferior beer ingredients. So do your homework on earning female market share. Now.

Get it right from the get go.

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And the Winner IS…

(Steve is on the right side)

(Steve is on the right side)

Humbling company, that’s one way to describe it.

Last week at the Craft Brewers Conference, some incredible people were recognized amongst their peers for their contributions in different ways. Hats off to them – pints up!

The great thing about many in the industry is that they’re making a daily difference. Plus they’re making great beer. Mmmmmmmm…

How are you making a difference?

Photo courtesy of Flickr by elwynor

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Labels

I believe a good label to be worth it’s weight in gold (or healthy dollars anyway).

  • kids-safety-labels-we-want-to-seeThe labels I like? Authentic, accurate, real.
  • Labels I don’t like? False, inaccurate, overtly off base.

So while I like what Christina Perozzi is doing, I don’t like the label “chick” for females and marketing to them/for them/about them. It sends the wrong message, whether intended that way or not.

My research shows over and over (as well as other well documented research) that sexualized, slang, inappropriate labels are harmful. Not neutral – harmful.

Regardless of if it is meant humorously, it will more than likely be a not so great choice. Regardless if you call yourself a chick to your female friends, it makes me nervous – misconception is a hard thing to put asunder.

Authenticity is critical – for selling your brand, for getting buy in and buyers, and for being true to accuracy.

I’m not talking censorship – I’m talking respectfulness, I’m talking about good taste good taste.

Respect your audience. All of them – even the ones you incidentally touch.

Photo courtesy of Flickr by pt

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Customer Experience Workshop Offering

The Power Of the Customer Experience

This particular workshop session is designed for individuals & small groups (up to 6-8 per company) – a larger group session made of of lots of different businesses.

Here’s your opportunity to attend, refresh yourself and enjoy the company of other engaged, motivated, smart people who also understand the full value of the Customer Experience.

Call me or email me by Friday May 1st to reserve your seat.

Only $30/per person for some energizing professional continued development. ($25 if you pay in advance by May 1st)

  1. Details:
  2. Location: First National Bank, 405 5th Street, Ames, IA.
  3. Parking: Please park in the street (spaces are plentiful & meters are cheap) to respect  the use of the banks customer parking for First National’s banking customers.
  4. Wednesday May 6th, 9:30 am – 11:00 am. Please be prompt.
  5. RSVP’s needed: due by May 1st; this email address or call 515.450.7757

Thank you very much – Hope to see you the 6th!

Ginger

The Power Of The Experience
is a participatory workshop offered by Snap!
about the Customer Experience through the vehicle of You
.

Dynamically Covering:

  1. Good Customer Experiences & Poor Customer Experiences
  2. Handling Less Than Ideal Customer Situations
  3. Applying Techniques & Best Practices
  4. The Effects of practicing Best Practices
  5. The Effects of Poor Practices
  6. Key phrases and words to avoid
  7. Specifics on how to handle Less Than Ideal People situations
  8. How to find or generate an answer to questions you may not have the answers for

Definitions Covered:

  1. Customer Service
  2. Customer Experience
  3. Types of Customers
  4. Adopting a Servant Mentality

If you want your dollars to really matter, this is no average workshop. Think of it as the anti-dry-and-boring-workshop workshop.

Just ask Matt Thompson, Dean of Student Services at Southwestern Community College http://www.swcciowa.edu/ . Snap! was in Creston, IA, home of SWCC early this spring & presented the workshop twice. By the next morning the college president had come by Matt’s office, stating she had heard so many great things about it that she wanted to already plan for the next workshop.

Can you afford not to stay in tune with the best customer experience you can offer?
Call me today to set up a time – let’s talk about it.
515.450.7757

P.S. Sharing the cost with others makes your investment stretch even farther. Get a group together – with other businesses, service clubs, organizations, and groups.

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Still On Adrenaline

WOW!

The Craft Brewers Conference is over for 2009 – and the pulse goes on. What an incredible experience to enjoy the company of so many remarkable people, quaff great beers, eat sea shore fare, and really connect.

Oh – and the fact I got the opportunity to present which was fantastic! “Where’s the Other 50%?! Developing & Serving the Female Craft Beer Enthusiast (Consumer) Market” I’ve gotten positive, specific feedback (more always welcome if you were in the room for it).

So for the moment – whilst I do a bit of catching up, THANK YOU!

Prolific & hearty thanks to all the attendees who were open to meeting, talking, conversing and in general keeping the Craft Beer movement healthy and going forward.

Check out my CBC Special package here. I’ll be putting together another pricing offering – a Guild focused package to help guilds offer more to their membership and further the cause. Inspired by Tom McCormick & Steve Parkes & Heather McClung & Dave Coy.

Call me and tell me how I can be of service in helping your brewery (yours or the local one you support) develop the female craft beer consumer market share.

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Back On The Beer Track

p1000317

I’ll be getting home from the Craft Brewers Conference today – most likely all revved up from great time spent with engaged switched on people and good beers. And seafood and fresh maritime weather. And lots of walking and laughing. (Little sleep I imagine).

Like Maureen says, “Beer is really good.”

So bear with me as I get back on track in the next day or two. Thanks.

For now, keep in mind – know your market.

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Top 50 ala…

Here’s a few posts to check out per the recent Top 50 Breweries listing.

  1. One
  2. Two
  3. Three

Kudos to all the craft brewers out there making a difference by making good beer.

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What Women Want

“Beer drinkers want flavor and diversity .”

Julia is SO right on the money here (literally).

In my ongoing research to serve the craft beer industry, over and over and over (and over and over) women are saying they want flavor. All kinds of flavors.

Message today: Don’t judge a beer by its drinker. Said another way, don’t judge a drinker by their beers.

Reserve judgment. Be a beer geek, not a beer snob.

Better yet assume that I like a lot of different kinds of beers.

grain-siloThrow conventional stereotypes out the top of the barley silo window and embrace flavor and diversity.

Photo courtesy of Flickr by Parnelli_97

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Wine ala Beer

Looking forward to several presentations at the Craft Brewers Conference in a few days.

One tidbit I have already gleaned from the (BA members access only – it pays to be brouwerji-lane-beer-coolersa member) preview to the presentations:

“Wine is not the enemy…”

True.

The Wine industry has much to share in education concerns, getting people to taste and try and then buy. And some wine focused stores could stand a refresher – check out this post.

If you think in context of complementary, instead of competitive, you can get much farther.

Photo courteys of Flickr by Tom GPRecs

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CBC Conference Special

For those of you attending the CBC this coming week, here’s a special deal.

Free Audit Of Your Business per Marketing To Women
Included with the consult of marketing your brand to women and all surrounding consultation services as well as travel, lodging, food & beverage expenses. (We’ll work out details in a letter of agreement.)

The Free Audit is a comprehensive look around your facilities, all areas of your operations and business; discussions with any staff; any and all discussion; synopsis of audit.
The Consultation is the plan of action after the audit has happened. The Consultation fees will be calculated on an hourly or project basis in advance, depending on the size of your facilities and what we specifically agree to work on together.

For example, if you have a smaller brewpub and want that facility to be evaluated and reviewed, then the walk through will be free (audit part) the consultation based on that walk through /audit will be what is charged. The consult includes professional suggestions, recommendations, an organized report of the audit, and follow up and follow through per the audit and consultation.

In essence it’s a buy one (consultation), get one free (audit).

Also – please know there is no nickel and diming. Follow up and follow through are critical elements to your success and I ensure that we take care of all agreed upon punch list items to satisfaction.

This special is available for three full months+ after the 2009 CBC (until end of July 2009). A deposit of most efficient and reasonable calculated travel expenses will be due before my arrival to your place of business (think of earnest money/down payment), the rest due upon completion.

Here’s an extra incentive.

If you pay for all services in full by the end of our on site audit & consultation, take another 10% off the final bill. You can therefore get the free audit AND the free presentation AND an additional 10% of the agreed up on figure, which we establish before I arrive, before I leave. You know how much it will be, you provide the down payment, I provide the full services agreed upon and you have the opportunity to save an additional 10% off the final bill. If you choose to pay after I leave, the balance is due net 10 – cash or check.

One final enticement – When you book the CBC Conference Special, I’ll provide (when on site) a FREE presentation to your group (of your choosing – company/employees/vendors/suppliers/any combination) The Power Of The Customer Experience. This is a $500 value, 1.5 hour engagement as a thank you for utilizing my services. The Power Of The Customer Experience is a refresher and reinforcer which covers best practices, dealing with less than ideal customers, good experiences, bad experiences, the customer is always first and more. It’s a lively, interactive, provocative and entertaining way to provide professional development.

Any referrals are greatly appreciated and also rewarded (case by case basis).

Book it, Dano.

Thank you – Hope to see you in Boston.

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Hats Off To Hops

Here’s to Mark and the crew at Summit for their latest con-hoption. Check it out.

p1020082Mmmmmm…makin’ my mouth water…..need to get some…

Summit was a site of one of my intitial focus groups addressing women & craft beer & marketing to them. I got in touch with Mark, he put me in touch with Carey, and Voila! The gorgeous ratskeller was available to utilize.

Thanks again! Hope to be there again soon (and maybe see you in Boston).

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Beer Wars Follow Up

revere-model-99-8mm-movie-cameraSo who saw it? Beer Wars, that is.

It was shown live in theatres nationwide (400 or something like that) last night at 7 pm. There was a live feed intro by Anat Baron (producer director) and Ben Stein.

The live element was cool & very unfamiliar to most of us around these days.

A raised pint of thanks to Noah at Draft News for posting my comments. Check all the comments out here.

Friend Maureen Ogle was sitting in the live panel afterward (and in the film itself too). Could have listened to the live panel for a while.

Motivates me further to keep the progress of accurately and authentically market craft beer to women moving forward.

Photo courtesy of Flickr by willceau

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New? As of When?

What’s your definition of new?

  • Does it mean previously undiscovered by you?
  • Does it mean brand spanking new to everyone?
  • Or does it sometimes mean you lagging behind?

shoes-a-beverage-and-something-blueToday I read an article in the Beverage Industry Magazine, March 2009 issue. It was on Social Media.

The magazine article states that “Social media offers new marketing options…”

Sadly, if this whole ‘social media thing’ is new to you, you really need to get some track shoes on and catch up. You’re missing the customer boat in many ways.

New? New marketing? Where has the beverage industry been? Social media is, in today’s terms, not so new. Perhaps unfamiliar (another definition of new to some). But new it ain’t.

If you consider it new, you’re not paying attention to the possibilities all around us in how to better spread our messages.

“A dramatic behavioral consumer shift…” is not only “afoot…” – it’s here.

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You're A Doll

Thanks to Mark Doll for the invite of last week’s World Of Beverages event. It was a seemingly well attended event. (I’ll post pictures when I get resizing photos figured

Tina & Carla from Ge-Angelo's

Tina & Carla from Ge-Angelo's

out in WordPress.)

Why did I go to a primarily industrial beer event?

To hopefully taste new beers (to me). I did find a few – mostly they served what they’re mainstreaming though. I was interested in beers that are out of the norm. Hopeful that using the title “World of Beverages” meant that they were going to offer plenty of non mainstream beers. Not so much.

After all, the fortune cookie I chomped into at the Kiren beer table tells me
“You are about to make a most valuable discovery.

Mark and Julia were on hand so I made sure to greet and meet them both. I had met Mark at fundraiser in the Des Moines area a month + ago. So was pleased to see the invite in my email. Thanks.

Paul was there too – working hard.

Where are the women working for distributors? Why aren’t there more?

Women – step up, get in the game if you want to be heard. You have to speak up first.

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