One Blog |January 4, 2017 | Point-of-Sale Marketing Software

This May Be The Year Beer Distributor Point-of-Sale Marketing Really Takes Off

Mark Fullerton

Polling for Data

If 15% of the over 320 million people in the US could be reasonably and rapidly surveyed imagine the richness of the information that could be collected in the form of an opinion poll or product survey. With over 45 million people surveyed, the value of the information would be rich, indeed.

The thing is that most polls typically attempt to survey folks who fit within a certain age and other demographic criteria, so the number of adults who are often “represented in a survey” is said to be “only about 200 million.” 

Do you know how many people are required to be surveyed to accurately gauge the opinion on practically any given subject of 200 million individuals? Just One-thousand! 

This means that just one person’s response to an opinion poll question represents — with reliably high accuracy — the opinions of 200,000 Americans, 199,000 of them who were not polled.  

According to the National Council on Public Polls (, about 250 national polls are taken every year, excluding this election year which would be much more. Assuming each person polled is only polled once, this means that 250,000 people, out of 200 million, provided opinions reliably representing the rest of us this year.

You’d probably like to think that more than a quarter million people would be required to speak for some two-hundred million of us. 

But the polling organizations say it’s not really necessary to poll more than 1,000 folks to understand the sentiments of the entire country on a variety of subjects from popular car colors, to fashion trends, to new features for future smart phones and who you want to be president. 

Polling The Beer Distribution Industry

Where this is headed is to tell you that a recent Beer Business Daily (BBD) survey I mentioned a couple of blogs back (“[Beer distributor] Marketing Expenses are Starting to Matter, Big Time” November 8, 2016) received responses from 424 beer distributors

The National Beer Wholesaler Association (NBWA) claims there are over 3,000 wholesale distributors across the US. 

The BBD survey of 424 responders represents about 14% of the total. This means that 424 beer distibutors placed 'marketing expenses' in their Top-3 items requiring attention in 2017. This is about a ten-fold increase in importance in just 24-months. 

Let's put the BBD survey in perspective:

If polling organizations believe that 1,000 individuals represent the opinions of 200,000,000 US adults with high accuracy, imagine the degree of accuracy that exists in the BBD survey.  

Your confidence in the BBD survey should be Extremely High.

Let’s Put 2016 To Bed

So here we are, putting 2016 to bed, and waking up to 2017 with a new list of beer distributors priorities that need addressing.

The Number 3 priority on the BBD list is marketing expenses. And according to our customers, point-of-sale (POS) marketing expenses are already one of their largest expenses. 

Armed with the results of a BBD survey, there are several other important pieces of information that can impact you in 2017:

  • Overall, less television is being watched than in the recent past — down 11% overall, according to Nielsen;
  • Today’s viewers, under 24, watch a lot less traditional television programming than previously — 40% less.
  • Traditional television viewership is declining; in the most recent quarter of 2016. Netflix reported adding almost four million subscribers, and Amazon Prime keeps picking up subscribers year-after-year, especially in the fourth quarter.
  • Big, Import and Craft Beer suppliers continue to push marketing costs to the distributors by reducing the available co-op and POS program dollars, and by increasing the reporting requirements placed on the distributors in order to claim marketing allowances.
  • Additionally, supplier print-shop infrastructure programs, often as generous as 50% of the distributor’s printer and consumables’ costs, are either being scaled back or are requiring the distributors to only produce in-house created POS collateral for a single supplier’s brands, or face loss-of-compliance punitive actions.

POS Marketing — The Most Effective Tool

It’s no wonder wholesale beer distributors have elevated the priority of their marketing costs to a top concern: POS costs continue to rise and supplier marketing allowances are harder to come by — all wrapped-up in an environment that points to POS as the most effective tool available to help build brands and increase sales.

Based on the distributor list on the NBWA website, there are many beer distributors who now are able to get their marketing expenses under control by using OnTrak's POS Marketing and Line Cleaning Software.

The best way to see the value of all of the OnTrak Tracking Solutions is to view a live, online demonstration. 

Click the following link to: Request a Demo, or call one of our product experts at 513-936-4041.

Over 100 Beverage Distributors Trust OnTrak solutions.

OnTrak is a Proud Member of:
Wine & Spirits Wholesales of AmericaNational Beer Wholesalers Association Path to Purchase Institute

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