One Blog |November 4, 2011 | POS Tracking Software

Why Beer Wholesalers Are Seeing the Power of Point of Sale Marketing

Mark Fullerton

Our View from Booth 1126 at the 2011 NBWA Convention

We just got back from our fifth straight annual NBWA Convention and Trade Show. Each year these guys do an outstanding job, and this year was no exception.

For OnTrak Software - This was our best year ever.

We were overwhelmed with the interest in our company and our products. We met dozens of beer wholesalers and their suppliers plus our customers, prospects and potential business partners – All very interested in what we do and how we help distributors improve their business and sales performance through the management of Point-of-Sale (POS) Marketing campaigns (custom and permanent signs and sampling programs).

Most of the people we talked to expressed interest in at least one of the following OnTrak benefits:

  • Cutting the cost of POS marketing - An expense item for them which seems to be out of control.
  • Growing sales with better POS marketing campaigns – Many agree that POS sells beer, and great POS sells more beer – But some consider POS just a necessary evil.
  • Measuring the impact and profitability of their POS initiatives - Not many are able to do this today, but wanted to know more about how OnTrak could help them.
  • All of the above.

With hundreds of booths, we were honored that so many wholesalers took the time to meet with us.

We had about 8 hours of booth time over 2 days, leaving us with but a few minutes to make an impression on the beleaguered conference attendees.

We’ve been telling our POS Marketing Management story for many years. Why in 2011 did wholesalers want to know more about our solutions to help them track, measure and manage their at-retail promotions?

Here’s a summary of what beer wholesalers offered:

  • Alcohol beverage sales have been down  - Most likely due to the overall economic downturn these past couple of years
  • Costs are up - Products, warehousing, delivery, sales and promotional costs
  • Competition is increasing – Presumably due to the proliferation of brands and consolidation of distributors

With these market conditions it’s not surprising everyone wanted to know how to get the maximum sales return on their ever-increasing investment in point-of-sale promotions. They don’t mind spending money on POS, if they are able to get a commensurate increase in beverage sales.

No wonder OnTrak’s products and benefits resonated with them.

Here’s our view:

While there are numerous ways to spend advertising dollars – A TV commercial, a newspaper ad, or a glitzy billboard – Both distributors and suppliers know that you have a better chance of turning shoppers into buyers at the point where the products are available  - In the store, restaurant or bar.

Given the current economic environment, increased competition and higher costs, advertising spend should be focused on where the customer’s money is spent first. So it is more important than ever to order, produce and place better and smarter shopper, in-store, point-of-sale marketing campaigns where shoppers become buyers.

So how do you create better POS marketing materials if you don’t have the tools to track, measure and manage those POS marketing campaigns?

Well with OnTrak software, of course.

A lot of people who came to our booth seemed to get that point. I wonder if it will catch on. I hope so.


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