In India, one out of every two bottles of beer sold comes from United Breweries. That’s a healthy market share for the company also known as UBL. Nevertheless, maintaining a prominent brand position within India’s liquor outlets isn’t easy. In the country’s highly regulated alcoholic beverage industry, selling doesn’t occur in the classical sense. Instead, Government entities control the route into most markets with retailers required to purchase stock from Government warehouses.
As a result, UBL salespeople have a unique role. They promote brand preference with liquor outlets and canvas for orders. They also ensure positive positioning of the brand at point of sale.
Perry Goes, SVP, Strategic Planning, Business Development, Sales Analytics & Consumer Insights for United Breweries said that the increasing power wielded by liquor outlets was a challenge. “The industry is growing – both in volume and competition – but the number of outlets has remained roughly the same for the past 60 years. Our success depends on salespeople’s ability to create a relationship with each of these.”
A new app built on the Salesforce customer success platform is supercharging outlet engagement. And, it’s transforming the role of salespeople, empowering them with data to give them greater confidence and connect to customers in a whole new way.
The PRIDE (Perfect-call Results in Driving Excellence) app, developed with Salesforce partner, ET Marlabs, also lets salespeople manage each outlet visit from their phone. Salespeople can now see at a glance if an outlet has purchased the quantity they committed to or if there are any service issues to be addressed. They can also review the freshness of stock and make a plan with the outlet owner to shift or replenish it.
Salespeople can also capture new information during visits to outlets, including competitive intelligence or photos of available space for promotions. Information is viewed and actioned immediately by management, who used to have to wait weeks for paper-based data.
“Before, our salespeople felt distanced from the power of information held within the business. Salesforce places them at the centre. It’s giving them confidence to speak with outlet owners knowledgeably, and it’s creating a culture of success,” said Goes.
United Breweries has more than achieved its goal to instil a sense of pride in its salespeople. Goes likens the project to the investment of a highway, giving salespeople a more effective path to get from point A to point B. “It’s a soft issue, but by giving our salespeople access to cutting edge technology we are investing in our people, and we’re motivating them to do their very best. The business outcomes naturally follow.”
Already, United Breweries is getting smarter about its customers and seeing stronger growth in markets where there’s been high adoption of the app. Volumes of its speciality brands are up a staggering 48%.
Enhanced reporting in Salesforce is paying off with potential issues identified within 48 hours versus one or two weeks. With more timely information to analyse trends, management is also able to find new ways to influence sales.
“The challenge now is to extend on what we have built and remain one step ahead of our competitors,” said Goes.