February 2016 Newsletter
And we’re off!!! I hope everyone had a great holiday season, was able to spend time with friends and family, and most importantly rested up for what is going to be a crazy, wild ride. With 2015 in the rearview mirror I want to thank everyone for a fantastic year. We delivered another strong double digit growth year and Q4 was amazing.
It's a whole new world in 2016. The mega breweries could not slow down their loss of market share, so they are buying up craft. Of those new acquisitions, a few will end up being solid sellers in the chains nationwide but most will eventually be disregarded and give way to the best of independent craft. We have been here before; the nineties saw lots of independent craft sell out. Can you remember them? Some are dead and some are still floundering as value brands in the chains with no broad market appeal whatsoever. The best of independent craft from that era continue to soar. Ten years from now, you will look back on this time, and know that your best investments were in independent breweries. Green Flash is committed to remain independent, continually reinvesting to build our brand, and partner with the best distributors in the country.
As we rang in 2016 we also rang in some changes. We have retired Hop Head Red and Double Stout in all packages and replaced them with Tangerine Soul Style and Passion Fruit Kicker. If they haven’t hit the floor at your distributor, they should be arriving soon. For those of you who were at the Distributor Meeting, you were able to try these fantastic beers that Erik and the crew have knocked out of the park. Most importantly the response has been amazing from consumers and the sell-through has been fantastic.
In addition to the above we are releasing Cosmic Ristretto and Dia de las Serranos in 22oz. and draft. Both of these beers are proven winners from our Genius Lab program (R&D) and have been served in our tasting rooms and at special events across the country. These extremely tasty beers are a great addition to our portfolio.
With these new launches come new expectations. We need to come out of the gate strong and get distribution in the off-premise and hold/improve our real estate. Everyone’s goal should be a full shelf of Green Flash. When setting the doors, think strike zone (shoulders to knees), no top or bottom shelves. Once you’ve secured the Green Flash shelf, we can move on to the Alpine shelf.
As for Alpine, if you are in one of the launch states keep your eyes open as we have a couple of new items coming soon. Willy Vanilly 6-pack bottles and draft along with Mandarin Nectar 22 oz. bottles and draft will be coming your way by the end of first quarter. These beers are both top-selling highly sought-after beers. Your RSM/DM will be getting with you soon to get the brands set-up, deliver your support assets, and establish a launch plan.
As you can see, we have been busy to ensure we are delivering innovative, top-quality beers. I look forward to toasting our successes with each of you in Virginia Beach later this year. On the topic of success, I am introducing our new Distributor of the Year Program, similar to The Master’s, I give you the Green Jacket Society. Please read below. Will you be receiving a jacket? I hope so!!!
Green Jacket Society
As I mentioned at our distributor meeting on November 4th, in addition to an award being handed out to each Regional Distributor of the Year, I am instituting the Green Jacket Society.
Similar to the Masters Tournament this is another way to recognize our top executing distributors for Getting Shit Done the Green Flash way. Each V.P. of Sales and Craft Brand Manager from each Regional Distributor of the Year will be awarded a Green Jacket. These jackets will then be worn at each Green Flash national event where you will stand out in the crowd and be the envy of all around you. You can even take it to the next level and wear it to fine events such as the Great American Beer Festival, Craft Brewers Conference, Harry Schuhmacher’s annual meeting, or even to your primary domestic brewer partner distributor conference and make a statement that says, “Yes sir, I do execute!”
Criteria to be one of the best of the best is a simple power ranker…
- Case volume growth over prior year
- Percent volume growth over prior year
- Distribution growth over prior year by brand
- Proper utilization of marketing bucket resource
So there you have it. I look forward to handing these fine jackets out next year and putting your picture on our wall of winners.
Green Flash / Alpine Beer Company are committed to working directly with you to help grow our brands. We need your assistance and partnership to flawlessly execute all chain programs, mandates and ensuring in-stock status of all of our new item authorizations. If we do not execute on all chain business we both fail.
Execute: Verb | Carry out or put into effect (a plan, order, or course of action)
Our plan and direction was discussed during our distributor meeting back in November. We have invested close to $250K in our National Account Department to secure distribution and expand our current chain partners. Nate Levi has joined the National Account Department. Nate has been with Green Flash for 3 years, has been a District Manager in multiple regions, and is a two-time District Manager of the Year winner! Rick Laxague, our Director of National Accounts, and Nate have already secured new partners and distribution and we are just weeks into 2016.
2016 National Account Growth Performance Indicators
- Execution with all chains
- Assortment of available SKUs
- Equal to or better than competition
- Days of inventory to support chain PODs
- Price to Retail
- Profit per point of distribution – by SKU tier/style segment
- Proper channel partners
Please reach out to Rick if you have any questions, ideas, best practices, or contacts for new chain partners in your footprint.
New Video Assets
December was a busy video release month for us, we added a Green Flash sizzle reel and kicked off our Taste Enlightenment tour with Soul Style and West Coast IPA 2016. All are available for use in the channels, and can be downloaded on the distributor portal or viewable on YouTube. Ever curious about the history of West Coast IPA? Grab a beer and enjoy an uncensored sit down with Hamilton's Tavern owner Scot Blair, Brewmaster Erik Jensen, Director of Beer Education Dave Adams, and our very own Jim Kenny as they discuss how West Coast IPA came to be, and what put it (and Green Flash) on the map.
Green Flash Ad Campaign
We are kicking off our new ad campaign unveiled at the Distributor Meeting. Look for the following ads promoting our flagship beers in DRAFT Magazine, All About Beer, and regional beer pubs nationwide:
Thank you for participating in our POS survey last month. Your input helped identify which items were in highest demand, and we are currently moving into production. Get ready to brand Green Flash at the point-of-sale as new items will be available on the distributor portal in Q2!
In the meantime, we have new POS assets to support our newest releases NOW. Use as posters and/or case stack graphics.
Plus seasonal assets for football season & St. Patrick’s Day: