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Big Poppa

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Good luck with that. My experience has been that none of them do as much as what you would want: Tastings, boots on the ground etc., because distribution is very labor intensive. If you add the factor of three tier laws that came out of the repeal of prohibition, you also find (Or maybe it was just me), that there seems to be a situation where the control is slanted toward them. If you go with the bigger regional houses, you can get buried if you don't have POS or a big marketing budget. I f you go boutique, you may get more work out of them but they don't have the resources... Six O one, half dozen of the other.

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  • 3 weeks later...

If you would like the name of an active broker in several different states, look up Southern Wine and Spirits. When you call them, they'll give the polite "we can't dedicate time to your brand at the moment as it will distract from our current obligations", when what they mean to say is "we already make loads of money moving Absolut and Johnny Walker, why should we take any risk whatsoever on your unknown brand?"

In my opinion, the only way to overcome this barrier to entry is to go out and sell the product yourself, get people drinking it, get people asking for it in bars, get stores to want to carry it because it flies off the shelf as soon as they put it up. Then, after you have done all of that upfront work, the brokers will likely contact you because there is reduced risk in representing your product. You need to establish a market for your brand, then hand it all over to the broker who will collect a commission on all that work you did upfront. In return, their accounts will open up to you, and your distribution will grow. Once you've "saturated" what they can do for you, and it's time to grow again, you will likely be approached by a bigger broker who has noticed the successful market you created in your local area (and is attracted to the commission they can collect). So far, this method has worked for us.

Money doesn't talk, it screams.

good luck.


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  • 4 years later...

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