Who is selling whom?

TOOOTSIES_LOGOIn the many hundreds of live music venues I’ve visited, getting a drink is the worst experience.

It’s loud making it tough to communicate. It’s dark. But the biggest problem is that there never seems to be enough bar staff. That means that thirsty patrons must jockey for position and try to make eye contact with bartenders. Some people wave tens or twenties in their hand. Some make their way to one end of the bar or the other, hoping that when the staffer moves, they will see.

It is one of the few places where the buyer-seller relationship is reversed. In a crowded bar, the buyer needs to work the angles to spend money.

Losing money

Of course, understaffed bars mean that people don’t order as many rounds as they might if there was no hassle.

If I’m enjoying the show, I might take a few minutes to grab a drink. But not if it looks like I’ll be there for more than 5 minutes waiting. Multiplied by lots of people, that could be thousands of dollars lost per night in a crowded venue where people forgo drinks.

A better way

Tootsies 1Last night I hit some of the live music spots in Nashville with my friend, HubSpot CEO Brian Halligan.

At Tootsies World Famous Orchid Lounge we were surprised to see the bartenders raising their hands and making eye contact with customers. Wow. What a difference!

Check out the bartender in Green on the right in this shot. (click to enlarge the photo).

Bartenders at a crowded music venue looking for me rather then the other way around!

It was a fun evening. (But I needed aspirin this morning because of the ease of drinking.)

In your market, who is selling whom?

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