CARIB THE REGION’S BEER
Caribe brewery is the Caribbean region’s leading manufacturer of beer and full flavoured non-alcoholic drinks. Headquartered in Trinidad and Tobago it has operation also in St. Kitts and Nevis, and Grenada. The company also has a distribution presence in the United States of America. The flagship beverage Carib Lager Beer was introduced in the 1950s. The company has boasted its portfolio of drinks to include malts, stouts, and soft drinks. The company manufactures yearly over 1.2 million hectoliters of products across its twelve different brand drinks. Owned by the Trinidad and Tobago based company ANSA Mc Al Group of Companies the company is guided by the following core values:
While retaining its brewing traditions, the company has adopted new technological traditions that improve its business and marketing effectiveness. In 2007, CEO, Mr. Allen Herrera vowed to make Carib Brewery a leader in understanding the needs and wants of its customers. This effort inspired the company to begin forming partnerships with international companies namely Heineken International and Ginseng Up Corporation.
The CEO exclaimed that real-time analysis of marketing effectiveness is timely data: getting information back from wholesalers, retailers, and customers on what is selling where, when, and why. “Wholesaler, store-level and customer insight data has become the lifeline of our organization,” said the Vice President for Sales and Distributions Department. Therefore, Carib Brewery Limited created CaribConnect (CC) to directly link to wholesalers, retailers, and other business partners and established a Social Media Analyst Team (SMAT) under the Marketing Department at created and utilizes a monitor software SMATTel. CaribConnect handles sales reporting, customer development, retail promotion notices, and weekly sales forecasting, as well as a wide array of logistics-related functions. Through CaribConnect, the delivery people of the various distributors of the company can now become the eyes and ears of the brewery giving insight into the purchasing patterns of wholesalers and retailers.
CaribConnect does much more than just keep tabs on the flow of icy cold Carib retailers’ refrigerated shelves. Using portable transaction computers, the delivery people also log data on competing products, identifying what else is on the retailers’ shelves. At the end of the day, Carib Brewery gets the data and looks for trends. “If Carib Brewery loses shelf space in a store in St. Lucia, they know it right away,” said Richards Carmichael, president of Caribbean Beverage Group, a research and consulting firm. “They’re really good at this game. The best in the Caribbean”
Understanding consumers means more than just gathering data on your own product or on your competitor’s product. CaribConnect also analyzes syndicated bar-code scan data gathered by Information Resources Inc. (IRI), to track consumer purchasing behavior across a full range of products. Carib Brewery Limited was able to successfully launch Carib Light after seeing data on consumer shifts in dietary habits in other food groups.
Timely, fine-grain data from SMAT also helped sharpen Carib Brewery’s marketing and product assortment. The team’s social media presence and quick analyst of internet buzz from their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages helps the company create targeted marketing materials. For example, data helps predict local sales during holidays, such as knowing that Christmas season is the most active holiday period in sales rather than summer. Demographic data help Carib Brewery Limited to know where cans sell better than bottles, and helped the company launch a range of seasonal inspired beverages such as Carib Shandy Sorrel beverage. Carib Connect uses a variety of internal and external data sources— including consumer demographics, POS, and market data—to guide product assortment decisions.
In a market in which overall sales are down 5.7 percent, Carib sales are up 7 percent. Carib Brewery Limited continues to expand its use of datalinks, using its market clout to improve data gathering and data sharing and SMAT continues to monitor the online chatter of customers.
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