If there's one thing that's never gone out of fashion it's cocktails. Cocktails are sexy, cocktails are fun and cocktails are effortlessly cool. Whether you were drinking cocktails in New Orleans in the mid 1800's, illicitly enjoying them at a speakeasy through prohibition or you can't get enough of them in a Miami beach club today, cocktails are a part of life that livens up the senses and sets pulses racing all over the world.
Why mixology is a master skill
The great news is that if you yourself are a master mixer or cocktail creator then by default you become sexy, fun and effortlessly cool.
Looking for a way to put a smile on people's faces? Be the friendly bartender who looks deep into their customers eyes, asking what kind of flavours and treats they enjoy. Then mix them up a liquid reward and wait for the results. Instant gratification occurs for not just the drinker, but also you. Is there any other job in the world that creates such genuine connection between customer and provider?!
If you set out to be a cocktail making master then you're playing your own part in history. You're following in the footsteps of cocktail pioneers who invented and innovated all in aid of making sure people had a great time. What's not to like?!
Setting up your own cocktails based business
So it depends where you're at right now in terms of experience and skill levels but the barriers to entry to getting started in a career in cocktails are so so low.
If you're a total newb then there are tonnes of resources out there in terms of amazing online cocktail recipes and books on the history of cocktails. Grab a few bottles of liquor (make sure you're legally ok to do this) which commonly occur in a number of recipes and find some willing friends to test on. Before too long you'll find your inner Tom Cruise and be ready to unleash your new found skills on the world.
If you're already experienced in making cocktails and see yourself as a master mixologist, then you know that cocktails are all about the experience and building up that winning rapport with your audience. Think about packaging up all your experience and taking your potential customers on a journey, whether that's through time, style, location or pairings.
But why not start thinking bigger about how to make a varied career out of cocktails? Because even though you have an alcohol based skillset, why should that limit you to only taking work in a bar? Why not look to make your skills work for you by creating your own business with much larger scope for growth.
As we enter this post-COVID world, everything is changing and everyone should feel empowered to take control of their own destiny. Maybe that destiny is in creating your own cocktail based business today?
Think beyond just making cocktails - 7 great ideas for making serious money in mixing
- Cocktail making is a social experience so why not hire out a bar or see if you know someone who'll let you use their venue for free on a quiet night. You could teach individual workshops or a monthly cocktail club.
- On the flipside, online is super hot right now for food and cooking classes. Make the move to virtual and tell your new class of devotees to make their home kitchens the bar!
- Hey, if your classes are full of people needing to buy the right ingredients, why not just supply them yourself. Both yourself and customers win as you make it convenient for them, plus you increase your margin by making a small profit on buying at bulk.
- Whilst we're talking about supplies, why not set up your own direct to consumer cocktail making subscription package? Perfect for them, perfect for you in order to create regular occurring revenue each month.
- Already have the skills to pay the bills? Why not work on a B2B angle by selling your services to new bars to train up their new staff in the latest and greatest cocktails. Or really follow the money and work direct with the corporates to satisfy their staff at offsite retreats, office parties and who knows what else!
- Designate mixology as a must have 'life skill' and go after both sexes who've always had making the perfect Moscow Mule or deep freeze Daiquiri on their bucket list. Identify an audience, sell the dream and get that shaker ready. You're ready to lead the charge on making regular cocktail making masterclasses desirable from millennials to husbands and wives to senior citizens!
- Think about how you could build your services into people's lifestyles. Could you offer a 'one cocktail a week masterclass' on a set day at a set time? It's human nature to enjoy routines and if you teach a group to make one cocktail a week at 8pm each Thursday then they will have learned 52 recipes in one year. What's more you can develop a strong conversation with the customer through the year (Christmas cocktails, mocktails in January etc) and have 12 months of repeat revenue.
Next steps to making a career in mixology your life's calling
Now you're ready, it's time to learn, plan and figure out how you can develop your potential services and new brand into a revenue generating tour de force.
Start small but dream big, research the competition and make sure you have a big enough customer base for your chosen enterprise. But also make sure you're going to have a whole lot of fun doing this. True success in life is making your passions your career and if you get the work/life balance right whilst running a profitable business then you're in dreamland.
Don't wait, get going and start building your audience. In a years time you'll thank yourself that you started today!
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