A little help from your friends

Related tags Soft drinks Coca-cola

The following article is brought to you by Coca-Cola.Suppliers can offer help and support for your pubRe-discovering the wheel is a regular pastime...

The following article is brought to you by Coca-Cola.

Suppliers can offer help and support for your pub

Re-discovering the wheel is a regular pastime in most industries - but why not make life a lot easier by tapping into the proven experience and brand power of leading suppliers?

Are you making the most of the hands-on help and expert support that suppliers can offer? Because suppliers want you to sell their product, they actually invest huge amounts of resources into making it as easy as they can for you. They research customer behaviour, they develop new products to meet changing tastes, they produce more efficient equipment to help you serve their products at the optimum quality and they spend a great deal on supporting their brands through advertising and promotions.

Reap the benefits of experience

Perhaps most important of all, they learn from licensees all over the UK, discovering what attracts new customers and how better sales can be achieved. As a result, your local sales development reps can have a wealth of ideas to tap into. They have seen what works and what doesn't across a wide range of outlets and can point you to the most effective approaches for your venue.

A good recent example of these resources in action is the steady move towards trading up to the new spirit sizes. Of course this is good business for the manufacturers but it is also popular with customers and a more profitable serve for the on-trade.

For Coca-Cola Enterprises Ltd (CCE), this change has involved developing new pre-packaged sizes, and in response to on-trade feedback, creating the non-returnable bottle packs that reduces costs and labour for the publican.

Creating opportunities

The introduction of new product, like the new 330ml packaging for Fanta Orange, Fanta Lemon and Sprite, is another occasion to utilise your suppliers' expertise. Barracuda, working with planograms produced by CCE, introduced a new stocking policy for their Varsity Bars, and in the case of the Varsity in Leicester, soft drink sales rose an impressive 54 per cent.

Suppliers can also help you with the organisation of promotions, give you ideas on how to get the most out of them and supply the promotional materials and displays for the event.

Hands-on help at the Rose & Crown

Roger and Lisa Boardman run the Rose & Crown in Edgeworth, Lancs. They recognise that the days when a pub could survive solely on drinks sales are over. Roger and Lisa are focused on building their business by targeting key occasions - offering restaurant service standards with great value-for-money for evening meals and Sunday lunches in particular. With this in mind, the pub has been totally refurbished to create a no smoking area and a separate diner area that is suitable for children.

From 5.30pm onwards, their weekday evening meals compete effectively against traditional takeaway choices. Roger and Lisa offer a two course meal of fresh, home-cooked produce including venison, guinea-fowl and ostrich dishes for £6.50. The pub has also become a destination for Sunday lunch for clients drawn from local towns CCE soft drinks representative Graham Halsall is helping Roger and Lisa to expand their soft drinks sales in line with their changing business. Graham has advised on the benefits of effective merchandising behind the bar of a wider range using a bespoke soft drinks fridge. He has also encouraged trading up - with positive effects.

"Trading up to the 16oz Georgia Green glass has provided better value for money to our consumers - at fist we were concerned about increasing the price but this has not caused any problem," Lisa told us.

An improved soft drinks range is also supporting the Sunday lunch trade as Roger explains: "Most of our customers don't want an alcoholic drink at lunchtime and we need to cater well for families. That's why we stock Fanta Orange and Lemon as well as Coca-Cola, diet Coke and J2O."

Top tips

  • Speak to your suppliers to see how they can help you increase your profits

Target your offers to different occasions

Make the best use of supplier promotions and materials

Make use of your suppliers knowledge for effective merchandising

... and promotional activity

"Coca-Cola", "Coke" and the design of the "Coca-Cola" Contour Bottle are registered trademarks of The Coca-Cola Company.

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