Selling Wine vs. Making Impact

Ask most wine sales reps, owners of wine bars, and owners of wine shops what they do and many will answer “I sell wine.”

Selling wine is being an order taker. Selling wine is about making tall stacks and grabbing the end cap. Selling wine is about following benign metrics such as “POD” (points of distribution) and filling out shelf placement surveys. Selling wine is about the unrealistic endless growth curve. Selling wine is about taking crap of all sorts from bullying buyers because they are who they are and you are who you are. Selling wine is about being pushed by your suppliers while they look at market penetration statistics.

Making impact is about taking a stand. Making impact is about having a goal higher than just moving boxes. Making impact is about starting mini-movements and watching them take hold. Making impact is about being tight with a few, friendly to many, but not a salesperson to all. Making impact is about industry disruption (which doesn’t have to be overt or loud) by carefully choosing your battles and walking away from some.

Selling wine is easy, because it’s reactive.

Making impact is hard, because it’s proactive.

Most people (including your competition) when given the choice, will choose the easier route. And that leaves an opportunity for you. Have a simple goal to change things and work consistently toward it … simple as that.