Increase your selling power by increasing your knowledge power!

Staff Knowledge Improves Ale Sales!

In the Cask Marque Reports 2016 and 2015 it states that your staff having knowledge improves ale sales and as typically as Cask is more profitable make your business more money. We know that the Cask Ale market is on the increase. With many more of us taking a passionate interest in the background and history of the beer that we are about to consume. In fact many recent articles are stating how customers are way more likely to buy from ‘knowledgeable’ bar staff.  Customers are increasingly more interested to hear about where their beer came from.

We know that real ale drinkers are serious about what they drink and have high expectations of bar staff with many expecting bar workers to be able to talk expertly about the beer they are serving. Customers react well when bar staff engage in conversation about their particular choice of ale. Quite often this conversation at the bar leads to another pint! According to the Cask Marque report 2017 (see below for link) a staggering 92% of consumers want to know more about beer styles.

With this in mind should we expect the bar staff to be ‘experts’?


The short answer is probably yes.  Staff training is the key here because ultimately we all want to increase knowledge and grow sales. According to the Cask Marque report, ‘50% of drinkers trust brewers to know most about cask ale’. Many local brewers are only too keen to come and talk to you and your bar staff.  Most welcome the opportunity to share information about their beers.  This is a simple mutually beneficial way to equip your staff with the skills and  knowledge needed to improve sales. It all helps your staff to feel confident when engaging with customers.

Consider working with the brewer to have samples available for ‘taster’ evenings as that would also be a great way to help the cause. After all you would expect a waiter in a fine dining restaurant to have tasted or a least know the ingredients all of the ‘specials’ on offer so why should beer be any different?

Accordingly to a recent article in Scottish Licensed Trade News, Paul Condron, marketing director at Tennent’s, agreed that boosting staff knowledge is a “great way to highlight your range”, suggesting that operators invest in training “which will encourage your staff to knowledgeably engage with customers”. “The Tennent’s Training Academy offers a variety of courses to give your staff confidence when recommending products,” he said.

The same article also reports that when it comes to the beer range, staff training should not be a one-time thing. According to Andy Maddock, managing director of Caledonian Brewery, operators should run product training sessions on a regular basis.

Beer Talk

Today many pubs are actively encouraging ‘beer talk’ at the bar, because it’s regularly reported that knowledge improves ale sales.  Some are even keeping ‘Real Ale’ menus ideally placed right next to the hand pumps. As we all know increasing your ale knowledge improves ale sales. Ultimately the responsibility to ensure customers are getting the best experience lies with the management of the pub itself. However properly trained and informed knowledgeable staff will surely be an asset to any bar.  With most definitely capable of driving up sales of cask ale. Again Cask Marque reports that Cask beer drinkers spend more money in pubs than anyone else – around £967 per year, compared with just £507.36 for the general population!

Another great reason to make sure that your staff ‘know their stuff’ is to capitalise on the fact that many beer drinkers are more than happy to share their favourite pint with some great tasting pub food. In a nutshell if you want to increase your sales of beer then without doubt investing in staff training is worth it.

To back this up the new cask report was posted by Cask Matters on Wednesday, 21 September 2016.

You can read the full report here:

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