Liquor commissioner wins merchandising honor

State Liquor Commissioner John Byrne has won Market Watch magazine’s 2006 Best Merchandising Award for his work in upgrading the agency’s marketing efforts.

Market Watch, a beverage industry trade publication, presented the award in Washington, D.C., to Byrne, who credited the agency’s employees and staff “who have and continue to work so hard on a daily basis to make each and every one of our promotions a success.”

The publication recognized Byrne and the commission for their aggressive marketing and merchandising efforts, which have led to increasing sales. Last year alone, commission sales totaled $401.3 million — an increase of 6.4 percent over the previous fiscal year.

“In today’s marketplace you need to be creative in order to drive sales. With targeted in-store promotions and creative merchandising campaigns utilizing all forms of advertising and the Web, we have increased excitement for our customers,” said Byrne, who oversees the merchandising effort. “This excitement is translating into sales. Profits for the 2006 fiscal year ending in June were 7 percent greater than 2005.”

Byrne attributed the sales hike to the agency’s effort to make the in-store experience more enjoyable for customers.

“In the past, the stores were cluttered with cases that were out of reach and unsophisticated promotional materials. We have gone to great lengths to make customers’ shopping experience enjoyable,” he said. And, Byrne said, the commission only allows certain signs to appear in stores, and new signs are designed so customers can locate products quickly and effectively.

“Our stores also have what we call a Power Aisle, featuring about 24 strong-selling or discounted items. Some stores have attractive wooden wine racks that line the walls, and spinnable displays containing wine and food pairings and recipes.” – NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW STAFF

Categories: News