21/05/2020 You have to adapt to the times, and the time is digital now. If you haven't already started increasing your distillery's online presence, take a look at how going online will help your distillery.
With almost everyone confined to their homes, the loss of a powerful acquisition channel can be detrimental for a business, which is why replacing it as quickly as possible is vital.
If you find your distillery in this situation, remember that your distillery is in business because your customers value what you have to offer. This means that they will still purchase from you, even if you can't reach them in the same places you normally would.
At the end of the day, live events are canceled for everyone - businesses and consumers alike. So reallocating your events budget to reach and engage prospects online is a smart course of action in a time like this.
Investing in your online sales is obvious given the fact digital sales have boomed in this pandemic with people sheltering. You as a distillery HAVE TO FOLLOW THAT CHANNEL. The old saying is "fish where the fish are."
That means be present where your consumers are shopping. Now you have to go and market to them and connect with fresh messaging. Existing retailers and suppliers who have benefited from the channel-shift and were prepared with online sales strategies are burning up the internet, and they will be more willing to talk to new brands at a time such as this.
Work direct to retail sales. Connect with the existing online retailers and give them a reason to sell and market your products.
Despite the fact that online marketing doesn't provide the same in-person experience that engaging a prospect at an event does, digital channels are a win for many reasons.
First of all, with improvements in technology and the rise in popularity of certain tactics like conversational marketing, spirits brands can connect with their website visitors in a more personalized way than ever before, and at scale.
The company website is no longer viewed as a blackhole void of human touch.
And because having a strong web presence is so crucial for discoverability, many brands who would otherwise be spending their budget trying to strike up conversations with prospects in person, are now empowered to invest more energy into crafting better content and building a better on-site experience instead.
Second, digital channels are much better for tracking and measuring than more "traditional" forms of marketing. Marketers have access to many different data points which allow them to see the full picture of campaign performance and identify areas for improvement quickly.
Last, since most employees are expected to work from home - at least for the foreseeable future, digital channels offer an easy way to keep the businesses front of mind. Everyone is confined to their homes (at least in California) anyway, so you can imagine that digital impressions are remaining consistent, if not growing.
1. Invest in Your Website and Online Presence
The digital face of your distillery or company is your website. Now is the perfect time to go through your website and make those changes that you were waiting for. Hire technical help and improve on the UX (User eXperience) and UI (User Interface). Make your website easy to navigate for your website visitors.
As for increasing your online presence, now that you've enhanced your website, it's time to attract more visitors. You can go ahead and find out tons of websites that give you backlinking opportunities. You can get your distillery listed on websites that offer direct-to-consumer retail and you can send out PR for your latest ventures. Another great option is to get listed on online listings of distilleries.
2. Invest in SEO and Content Marketing
Digital selling is a lot different than traditional selling. Here, you want your customers to come to you. And what better way to do so than 'content'. Invest time and resources if you can in developing your content. Your distillery's story, your current offers, your situation in this crisis, the steps you've taken to ensure your employee's and customer's safety in this crisis and so on. The list is endless. There are online platforms like GetDrinksDelivered.com where you can share the content that you've created on your company pages.
You can focus on improving your on-page SEO by reviewing the keywords you're using in your website content. Don't forget to check your off-page SEO and backlinking too. Off-page SEO is generally overlooked, but is as important, if not more, as on-page.
3. Hone Your Brand Message
You should modify your messaging and tone of your communications to be in sync with the situation. You would want to show empathy and care for your customers. You don't just want to sell, you want to support the economy and support your community as well. And you want to get through this and come out stronger. With a stronger brand identity and a more loyal customer base than you already have.
4. Invest in Phone Sales and Data Gathering
Phone sales have been a huge boost both to sales and engagement for those using this approach. It's a great way to get the most efficiency from variable tasting room traffic, especially with consumers working from home. Now data gathering is a tough process, considering the ever-changing data laws environment. You need a way in which the customers contact you for more information. GetDrinksDelivered.com is a great example of how you can get your customers within the localities that you deliver to contact you.
5. Invest In Video Tastings
Video tastings are being viewed by many as overdone. That's true only if videocasts don't sell spirits and so far, there appear to be good examples both in added sales and new club signups. The more of these we produce, the more professional the videocasts will become. It's not the same as visiting your tasting room, but this will stick when this pandemic is over. It's more scalable than in-person tasting, and it's cheaper and a better use of your sales team compared to getting in an airplane and staying in hotels. Now you can build a brand in remote places.
To sum it all up:
Many distilleries have been negatively impacted by the coronavirus as it has caused the swift and unforeseen closure of all live events for the next couple of months. Since live events and tasting room gatherings are a key acquisition channel, brands in this space must look elsewhere for new, qualified leads, and many are turning to digital.
When it comes to new customer or client acquisition, the first and most important thing is your website and online presence. Having a strong presence signals that you are a trustworthy entity, who understands the importance of technology in today's digital landscape.
Investing in content and SEO is the next thing you should do if you want users to find your website and become qualified leads for your business.
Having a brand message that is based on research and aligns with your customers will help with acquisition and retention, especially in times of uncertainty.