MillerCoors discovers sales opportunities, selling more product to retailers with Tableau Online


Deployed enterprise-scale solution in 90 days
Sell more product with better retailer relationships
Pull market insights for retailers within 15 minutes

MillerCoors produces popular beer brands including Miller, Coors, and Blue Moon. Its retail sales force is always on the go, communicating with bars and restaurants. In just 90 days, MillerCoors went from pilot phase to enterprise deployment of Tableau across 300 salespeople. With Tableau Online, a MillerCoors sales person can pull up a sales dashboard to share with retailers over a mobile phone or tablet, strengthening relationships and differentiating them from competitors. Internally, the team established one source of truth for sales reporting, increasing visibility to spot opportunities and sell more product.

[Tableau Online] was a natural fit for our first really big enterprise deployment...based on the mobile nature of our sales force and based on the selling cycle that they deal with.

Pulling a custom sales report within 15 minutes

MillerCoors’ sales team regularly compiles data to identify the most profitable products for retailers. Before Tableau, MillerCoors’ sales team had to manually extract data from countless Excel reports—often working through the weekend to understand the data.

With Tableau Online, Jim Webb, Director of Customer Solutions explains: “In the car, in the parking lot, 15 minutes before their meeting, they can pull down the full sales report and see what they need to address with the retailer and pull together some key opportunities to help our retailer grow the size and value of their beer category.”

“When our team sells, they’re doing it with an iPad over the bar and everybody's busy. And without a cloud-based solution that they can pull down on a mobile device, it's a really difficult conversation to have,” explains Jim.

Tableau Online fits in with the mobile nature of MillerCoors’ sales force, giving them the flexibility to bring data into daily conversations.

“A cloud-based solution for us was really the fastest and easiest way to bring some of this insight to our customers,” says Jim. “Tableau Online in particular was a really great way to deliver that based on the mobile nature of our sales force and based on the selling cycle that they deal with.”

In a world of hundreds of taps, we need data to help our bar managers succeed. We saw a great opportunity to present better information to our retailers.

From pilot to enterprise deployment in 90 days

In just 90 days, MillerCoors moved from pilot stages to a full enterprise deployment with their retail sales force.

“Cloud was a great way to quickly implement a solution, not have to worry about a big infrastructure spend or a big infrastructure ramp-up within our company,” shares Jim. “We were able to seize an opportunity very quickly and then scale it from a small pilot community into our entire sales team in less than three months.”

Today, around 300 sales people access dashboards with Tableau Online. This cloud solution allowed the company to start small and scale as needed.

“This was a natural fit for a Tableau evolution for us in our first really big enterprise deployment. I don't envision another solution where we could have gone from a test case to a pilot group to a full deployment in 90 days like we did with Tableau Online.”

Discovering new opportunities with one source of truth

With a culture of Excel reporting, salespeople had a hard time distinguishing which report was correct. “We had five or six different reports that each sales person was having to use and they all kind of picked their favorite. Whichever one they knew and understood the best, that's the one that they were going to focus on.”

As a result, salespeople sometimes missed bigger opportunities, simply because they didn’t have an efficient way of discovering them. With Tableau, the sales team now has one source of truth for sales dashboards—allowing them to see the full spectrum of customers and take action when opportunity arises.

“What we've been able to do with Tableau is make sure that sales sees the full universe of what they should be focusing on to find the biggest and best opportunity. In turn, this will help grow our business and help grow the retailer's business.”

The team publishes sales target dashboards on Tableau Online, creating better visibility and igniting collaboration and healthy competition between team members:

“We have everyone's sales targets on Tableau Online now, so we've got some great healthy competition amongst our team to make sure that everyone's working together to meet their goal.”

Cloud was a great way to quickly implement a solution and not have to worry about a big infrastructure ramp-up within our company. We were able to seize an opportunity very, very quickly and then scale it from a small pilot community into our entire sales team in less than three months.

Strengthening relationships and selling more product

In addition to discovering sales opportunities, the MillerCoors field sales team uses Tableau Online to share data with retailers.

“In a world of hundreds of taps, we need data to help our bar managers succeed,” explains Jim. “We used Tableau in other departments for around two years. We saw a great opportunity to really take a large workload out of their day and present better information to our retailers.”

With Tableau dashboards, sales people can show retailers the key drivers for their business, help them understand consumer demographics, and determine how they compare to similar establishments.

“Everyone has their own gut feel about beer and what's important to them, but we can really use the data available to us from Tableau Online to go in and tell them what’s actually happening in the market."

These insights help retailers sell more product, strengthening sales relationships and increase profits. This access to data helps differentiate MillerCoors sales representatives from competitors: “No one has ever brought these independent bars and restaurants a really conclusive market view. We're able to go in and tell them, ‘hey, you're selling more or less than you did a year ago.’”

Transforming sales conversations with Tableau

Jim shares how he often gets phone calls from sales representatives about “how it’s making their life faster and easier.” And as salespeople advance within the company, they’re requesting to bring Tableau with them.

“I've always been working with data to tell stories to retailers and try to help grow their business. And when I can see an entire sales force of 250 people who are able to engage and tell those stories, thanks to Tableau Online, that makes a big difference in my day and how we go to market with our customers.”

“We sell beer for a living. It's a fun product, it's a fun company. But we do use lots of data. And data's not always fun. So playing with Tableau, getting it online, getting it out into everybody's hands, it's a great way to take a fun product and make the analysis out of it fun as well.”

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