3 Level Discussion At some point in your life, you have earned the right to say you have seen it all.

I’m 50 years old, so I don’t know if I’m ready yet, but I’m sure I’ll make it.

In other words, I know of only two channels where you can buy alcohol: the onshore channel, where the bars and restaurants are, and the offsite channel, where the liquor stores are.  If the vendors wanted to sell their product, it had to be in those two elevators and accounts that fall under that umbrella.

2020 changed everything!

If you’re a football fan, you’ll remember that Drew Bledsoe was hit by New York Jets linebacker Mo Lewis in the second game of the 2001 season and suffered a ruptured blood vessel in his chest that nearly killed him. Substitute Bledsoe, substitute Tom Brady took the starting lineup and led New England to the playoffs.  It was the last day Tom Brady was the backup quarterback.

It was a classic example of the Rudy moment.  Just put me in the coach, I’m ready to play. 2020 was the exact same year, it was a moment that put me in the crosshairs of liquor store apps and online ordering.

Reserve Bar, MiniBar, Thirsty, Drizzly, Sousley,, (insert name of choice) wine club.  They all had great years.  There was once a joke that the only person making money from was the one who sold them the URL.  This story is old and dead, the new story is a look at how the category has grown.  Applications and websites were at the forefront of customer engagement, sales, revenue, net income, brand advocacy and loyalty. 2020 has been an educational moment for me.

Introduction of the E-Premise 2020.

Suppliers, importers and distributors now have another way to exchange goods.  Like the current three-tier hierarchy, E Premise must be careful not to fall into the same model in favor of strong brands.

The best brands are the ones that sell the most. The brands that sell the most attract the most attention.  The brands that attract the most attention are the brands that attract the most attention from customers and store owners.  This also applies to the beverage circuit.

In the year 2020, we have noticed that the sites look like an overcrowded liquor store.  The biggest brands had the best page placement.  The best brands (read highest gross margin) were stacked in the store.  The site’s good track was like a beer alley in a store with advertising and marketing.  The AI’s intuitive online buyer was a real salesperson who made recommendations.

This increases the pain for a new chain in an industry that has been forever changed by Covid.  Vendors must create new marketing and sales plans to reach the virtual buyer.  Conversely, these new sites and applications should help level the playing field.  What is most frustrating for suppliers in a traditional three-tier system is that the most perceived brands get the most attention, presentations, offers and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for them. It’s becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy.  It’s a very difficult circle for any new brand.

Ideally, websites and applications should focus on new and unique brands to level the playing field.  New brands are the ones that need support and screen time. New and unique brands require a fraction of the intelligence that a website or application can provide.  The Miller Light and Jameson service will only grow in popularity and continue the struggles of many new brands.

Applications and websites can serve as an equalizer in the battle to keep a new or phantom brand afloat and survive its critical early years.  You never know what can happen when a brand has a chance.  Nobody knew Tom Brady until Drew Bledsoe was eliminated.

We can all contribute to the emergence of a new tuberculosis, and the electronic counter channel can be a launching pad.


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