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Creativity + Analytics = Profitable Cocktails

Posted by Sculpture Hospitality on May 25, 2017 9:39:00 AM

In Bar Management, Controlling Costs

shutterstock_222921652.jpgA great mixologist will bring plenty of creativity to their drinks, but they can make even more profitable cocktails by using a little bit of data to further inform their ingredient choices. While it may sound counterintuitive to argue that crunching numbers can be a tool for creativity, today's technology allows these two areas to blend seamlessly. Before you put together your next drink menu, here are some ways you can be more strategic about designing delicious drinks.

Choosing the Right Ingredients

Your inventory data provides a goldmine of information that can be used to pinpoint which products are performing well and bringing in the most revenue. Taking a look at this information is the easiest way to choose the best base liquors that will anchor your new cocktails.

You might even take a different approach and use this opportunity to highlight and promote a lesser known spirit. This provides patrons with a unique tasting experience and allows you to start moving sitting inventory off the shelves. 

Pricing New Cocktails

Sales and inventory information are also vital tools when it comes to effectively pricing new drinks. If you find that different mule style drink combinations tend to be popular orders, then you may want to add a specialty drink to the menu. The challenge is deciding whether to push for a higher profit margin to make more money off popular cocktails, or offer a deal in order to further drive popularity.

If you aren't sure which approach to take, be sure to consult your inventory and sit down and crunch some numbers. You will be able to make projections based on current performance and choose the best price for the most profit. In addition, you can monitor performance over a certain period of time and make price adjustments if needed.

Determining the Menu Size

Letting creativity run wild can also result in an extensive cocktail menu that requires you to have a lot of ingredients on hand. This could translate into investing a lot of money into inventory, which could end up sitting on your shelves. 

At the same time, you want to offer enough specialty choices so that you are really showcasing your skills and providing plenty of options to please different palates.

Again, the best way to determine just how many cocktails you should offer comes down to inventory and sales. If you cater towards an after work crowd that tends towards beer and spirits on the rocks, then you may be wasting your time and talents by coming up with a long list of fruity drinks.

You may be better off coming up with some creative Old-Fashioned variations and using a smaller menu to promote your most popular spirits. 

Adjust to Seasonal Trends

As you examine your inventory data, you may notice that certain liquors tend to become more popular at different times during the year. When the weather turns warm, you may find yourself serving more vodka and gin based drinks. Use this information to adapt to seasonal trends and make the most of any changes in customer habits.

Creativity is something to be celebrated, but when it comes to running a successful business, it is important to use available data to provide some parameters for your creativity. If this all sounds like a lot of work, then you probably have yet to migrate to cloud-based bar inventory management tools. There are plenty of available programs that streamline the inventory process and visually present information in charts and graphs for quick consumption. Getting the right data tools might be the first steps towards profitable creativity. 

Are you ready to talk to us about your bar inventory?