Ordering beer from your favourite brewery online is almost becoming the norm these days, so a lot of breweries are now turning their hands to monthly subscription services. Why wouldn’t you? It guarantees income each month, it can have a lower cost on average for acquisition and it creates a community around the brewery.
Electric Bear is reaching the 6-month mark on its. We created the Bear Club in March 2021, and the process so far has involved some big learning curves. That’s why I want to share with you everything that I have learnt, from setting up the products and managing the service each month, to how we see the products developing in the future.
Keep it easy to understand
Whether it’s the products you are offering, or the terms and the sign-up process, it’s important to make the journey as easy as possible for the customer. If people are confused along the way, then they simply won’t bother and will go looking for another subscription.
It’s also important to have an up-to-date FAQs section, so customers can find out all the information they need about the product. This means that they won’t be surprised by what’s in the beer subscription box or when it will arrive.
The process of sorting out products and organising the subscription can be quite a time-consuming task to complete each month. It’s important not to leave everything to the last minute.
I plan at least 2-3 boxes into the future every month; I’ll order products, make sure I know what beers will be coming out and the snacks that will be paired with them. This leaves me with more time to think creatively instead of panic at the end of each month.
Add value if you can
It may be as little as a sticker, a beer mat or a personalised note, but attention to detail makes a big difference to the product you are offering. Extra added value proves to the customer that they are getting what they paid for, and then some. Plus, going above and beyond always shines through, keeping people personally invested and excited about their subscription box arriving each month.
Variety is everything
Much like point number 3, having a variety of different beers is important if you want subscribers to stick around. If the box is the same, or if you are only putting beers in that are close to expiry, then customers will notice and either let you know or just not come back.
Having a few different options to suit people’s varying preferences will also make your craft beer subscription box more inclusive. Add in a pale ale for drinkers who may not like stouts and sours. You want there to be something for everyone.
Ask for feedback
Our beer subscription is already evolving each month thanks to suggestions and feedback from our customers. The only way to find out if your product is working is by asking those who are buying it.
I love hearing what our subscribers have to say, whether that’s learning what their favourite beers are, or even finding out something that they didn’t love. This makes sure you aren’t wasting time and effort on something that isn’t resonating with your audience. It can also help bring new ideas to the table.
It’s okay if people leave
Don’t take it personally! Subscribers will come and go depending on several factors: the time of year, if they are on holiday or due to personal issues. It’s a good idea to ask them to enter their reason for cancelling, so you gain more information.
If you start to see a pattern, then you know where to look for solutions. That being said, a churn rate is normal, which is why it’s important to continually attract new customers while nurturing your existing ones.
Charge errors - see it from the customer’s side
Some days, charge errors are the bane of my life! Sometimes a payment just doesn’t go through, even after the details have been changed or the bank has been contacted. Remember that you are just one person and can only do so much.
That is why customer support is key; you want to try and keep your customers informed when errors happen and discuss how they can be resolved. Try to become an expert on the subscription app you are using so if problems do occur, you can be confident when dealing with the customer.
Even if it takes a few days, honesty really helps to create and retain trust from your subscribers.
Build a community
Your subscribers have chosen your company to receive beer from every month - don’t take that for granted. That means something, these folk love what you are offering. If you utilise this passion, it doesn’t only enrich the product, but it builds a great community that can make your job even more fulfilling.
Engage with your subscribers, create a persona, tell friends; your community will feel like they are part of something special, and ultimately make the subscription beer box better. Look to include things like special beer subscription offers, competitions and customised newsletters, as these will nurture your community and keep the buzz alive.
Make it fun!
If you have fun with your ideas, then you will look forward to curating the box each month. Your ideas will become more creative, and your subscribers will pick up on them. Don’t be afraid to be silly, include inside jokes and put your personality into the subscription.
Once you do this, it will not only be something your subscribers look forward to receiving, but you look forward to curating each month! I have had a lot of fun so far getting to know subscribers and showcasing my silliness every month.
We have some great features coming for the Bear Club, including craft beer gifts, as well as the offer of a 3-month beer subscription and a 6-month beer subscription. In September, we’ve also planned a live tasting for our subscribers, which will include a lot of great beers from Electric Bear and other breweries we have collaborated with.
I can’t wait to see what the future of the Bear Club looks like and continue watching our community grow.Kept all the headings the same style as the first one.