Three Fatal Flaws of Brewery Start-Ups

There are more than 4,000 craft breweries in the United States and that number is continuing to grow. From 2014 to 2015 the number of craft breweries grew by 14.9%. There are many people with an entrepreneurial mindset who have thought about opening a brewery or are in the process of doing so, but may not have calculated all that goes into opening and running a successful business. It comes down to some very important factors that will have a big impact on whether your brewery prospers or falls through the cracks.

Marketing

Overall, Marketing will cover public relations, advertising, promotions and sales. Some business owners don't see the value of marketing, which may be attributed to their lack of knowledge on the subject, therefore they don't want to deal with it. Marketing your brand can be a key factor in the growth and viability of the company, and at the end of the day, marketing will lead to sales which is what will keep your brewery moving forward. As a new brewery owner, it's all about getting your business and product on the radar of consumers to better your chance of them visiting your brewery and/or purchasing your product. You could be the world's best brewer, but not have a clue about marketing. Hire out services to experts and focus on your craft. Social media is now more of a must than a maybe. With millions of people on social media it is important to utilize apps such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to get the name of your business out to anyone and everyone. Its the law of numbers, the more the word spreads, the more your sales with increase. 

Having proper insurance coverage- Course of Construction

While owning a brewery, having the right insurance coverage can be looked at as the most important factor to keeping your business operating smoothly. But, you have to get to the opening of your brewery first, and if you don't have course of construction (COC) insurance, you may never see your doors open. Course of construction will provide peace of mind for the owner/developer and the general contractor. If there is a covered loss where you will have to start over and rebuild, this insurance will pay the costs to clean debris and rebuild. During construction there is higher chance of exposure due to theft and fire and often times this is the phase where you see many businesses take a step backward because one of these exposures ends up happening and the owner didn't have proper insurance coverage. COC is designed to cover repair or replacement costs while buildings or projects are under construction and, in certain cases, for a stated period afterwards. The building materials, fixtures and appliances (while under construction), that are expected to become an essential part of your brewery will usually be covered as well. 

Losing Focus- The Ultimate Goal

It may seem impossible to lose focus on the business that you've looked forward to starting for so long, but it does happen. Being an entrepreneur, you understand that there are countless decisions that need to be made, and you have to keep moving quickly. Make sure you have a clear focus on your product, your consumers, and your strategy, because it is crucial to understand where your focus should be well before opening your brewery. Once your brewery opens you have to understand that you will have limited time and resources, which is why you need to focus and prioritize. As a new business you will be a small brewery that will be focused on your craft of brewing quality beer that will bring patrons through the door, but try not to get complacent as you see the first bit of success. As your business grows, you have to adapt to things that may be thrown your way, but you have to remember to hang on to the ultimate goal of growing as a successful business. 

 

Understanding some of the fatal flaws of opening a brewery and having a plan in place to not let them happen will be important to the viability of your business. If you have any questions on how to avoid certain flaws or any questions in general please contact us.