The best things about wine sales

You get to talk about beautiful places. You get to talk about a delicious and historically important beverage. You get to talk about legendary families and fresh new upstarts. There is always something new. There is competition at all levels and price points (imagine the boredom if there was truly no competition). You get to Read More…

Tell me a (curated) story

Who made the wine? Where did it come from? What does it taste like? What makes it different from the others? These are common questions that get addressed in a sales presentation about a wine. They are what buyers expect to hear, so much so that a sales rep often blindly rattles off the list Read More…

Can you measure it?

As a wine sales rep for a good retailer, you sometimes take your personal time and devote it to the store by standing behind a barrel pouring samples for anybody who wants them. Boring stuff, usually. You might not sell very much wine, but one person connected deeply with one of your wines, and she Read More…

The 5000 piece puzzle

Lots of people love puzzles. It’s a great way to idle away time on a long weekend at the cabin, or during a family reunion. Why are some 1000 pieces? Why are some only ten inches square while others are huge? Why would someone intentionally choose an incredibly difficult 5000 piece puzzle? Easy: they want Read More…

Fiction perfection.

There is no such thing as a perfect wine. There is no such thing as a perfect sales call. There is no such thing as a perfect customer. And there’s no such thing as a perfect sales rep. Don’t aim for perfection. Aim instead for continuous improvement, personal development, refinement, and betterment. Be better today Read More…

Show notes

One more sales call is done. Onto the next one. You throw the wine bag into the trunk, you hustle into the driver’s seat, take a quick look at the time (damn, late again) and throw it into reverse. Not so fast. The moment after a sales call is the one moment you have to Read More…

Who did better?

Sales rep A and sales rep B have the same account list. They joke about how they should carpool to their accounts. Sales rep A walks in, does the normal discussion and tasting with the buyer, goes through the inventory and starts to take the order. Ten wines get ordered, a case of each. A Read More…

How to make a phone call

When I was a teenager, I had an unnatural shyness about calling people on the phone and asking for information. What time do you open? What time do you close? How much do your karate lessons cost? What time does the movie start? Are you looking to hire a very introverted teenager like me? I Read More…

Taking a stand

All that really matters is the experience of the end consumer. Simple as that. If she pops a bottle of wine with friends, pours the glasses, and loves the experience of drinking that bottle then it really doesn’t matter who the wholesaler was or even who the retailer was. The only two connection points in Read More…

Promises, promises

“I promise I’ll communicate better about out of stocks. Trust me.” “I promise I’ll visit that unsold account. I’m all over it.” “Have no fear boss, I promise I’ll get that invoice mess up cleaned by the end of the week.” “I promise I can run that will call on Monday.” “I promise you I Read More…

Thanksgiving week empathy

This is a tricky week for the wine sales rep. Retailers are busy. Too busy for sales calls. But they may need the emergency will call. Displays have to be stocked and looking good. It’s the classic situation of “you can’t sell it if you don’t got it.” Restaurants are historically a bit slow (but Read More…