Monday, August 2, 2010

The Waterboy

After 20 years of selling nothing but Bud or Miller at Twins games, the summer outdoor atmosphere of Target Field has presented a couple of opportunities to vend a different product. On the warmest and sunniest of day games, nothing sells better than Ice Cold Water. Bottled Aquafina.

Beer just doesn’t sell well to fans sitting in the sun and 95 degree heat. Fans cannot actually continue drinking beer at a partying pace when it is that hot. Water outsells beer at those games.

I have passed on the beer ticket and sold H2O twice so far this year, and it has worked out better than selling beer. Besides, it is so easy to sell bottled water.

No ID’s needed.
No caps to remove.
No cutting people off if they have had too many.

I just break the seal on the cap and hand it out. I can sell to 7 year olds and 70 year olds. It’s almost as refreshing to sell, as it must be for fans to drink.

Vending is all about marketing. With beer, the chant from most vendors is, “Beer Here!” Simple and to the point. People want "beer", and “here” is where they get it.

With water, I have discovered a new phrase… I present this thought in fans’ minds that they “need” to drink water. The sun is heating them up, they are thirsty and slightly uncomfortable, and everyone knows that water is what you need to survive. I will walk down an aisle and almost make a plea for people to pay attention.

“Who NEEDS Water?? Who is thirsty??”

I add almost this desperate tone on the word “needs”. It puts this thought in fans minds, that I might be right and they may not survive 9 innings without the water I am selling. I never even mention Aquafina because it really isn’t important. I could be selling Minneapolis city water and it would make no difference, because... People NEED it.

I see hands go up, and it becomes infectious. People actually say to me when purchasing, “Yeah, we need water here”, sounding almost grateful for the opportunity to hand over $4 for a bottle.

Sure, I get grief from a lot of my regulars about selling water, but even they will buy one when they get too hot.

So don’t be surprised if you see me selling water at games on those hot days. After all, I am just trying to distribute the thirst quenching liquid that people need the most at that particular game. Some days it is beer, and some days it is water.

No comments:

Post a Comment