The Gin CooperativeThe premium resource to discover, explore and buy Scottish Gin.
Published: 20th November 2020
Since we established The Gin Cooperative in late 2017, we’ve worked tirelessly to showcase the Scottish Gin category as a premium spirit made with care and skill in Scotland. As we’ve grown as a business and resource for consumers and trade looking to discover Scottish Gin, we’ve had a fantastic amount of positive feedback about how we present Scottish Gin on our website and social media channels. We set out to treat all our members as equals and peers regardless of production volumes, still size and in some cases those who have a helping hand to make their gin at a third party distillery.
Our primary focus has always been to educate, inspire and help people discover and enjoy Scottish Gin. After our own initial investment and costs of establishing the business, our membership model has meant we’ve been able to continue growing our platform. Our editorial standards have always aimed high, striving to create and publish content that showcases our members products, stories and brands in a way that’s both engaging but also carefully curated with images, text and video.
We’re proud to be working with and supporting a number of amazing Scottish Gin makers and brands and we’re proud to be the premium resource for all things Scottish Gin with continued investment in our website; not only in our digital presence but we’ve continued to focus on capturing as much original content as possible. This includes staging and taking original photography for our editorial features and social media content, visiting members in all four corners of Scotland and using our visits to learn, discover and capture the real stories behind the brands, the people, the places and of course their Scottish Gins.
It’s now close to 3 years since we established the business and during this time we have continued to invest resources in our website and digital platforms. Like any business we have ambitions and lots of great ideas of how we can help consumers and trade discover Scottish Gin and also how we can continue to support our members through our activities and our unique membership.
A question we’ve been asked a few times is ‘does being a member of The Gin Cooperative lead to sales?’ The answer is no, yes and maybe. We’ve heard directly from retailers they’ve discovered a new gin through our directory. We’ve heard directly from producers that they’ve had sales to the off and on-trade thanks to our website. The reality is however, it’s impossible for us to trace every opportunity and lead that a gin maker might get thanks to our website and activities. One thing we can say for a fact is that being a member of The Gin Cooperative does help consumers discover members products and brands in a saturated market. We also strongly believe that The Gin Cooperative is a positive voice for the Scottish Gin industry and one that encourages collaboration, community and collectively Scottish Gin as the true spirit of Scotland.
As more and more consumers visit our website and go on to purchase through the affiliate links on our website, we’ve seen a consistent and high number of sales of gin. The result is that we know, thanks to our website, that we’re helping Scotland’s gin makers and brand owners sell their products. And although there are a number of great online retailers, there’s also a massive opportunity to educate consumers about the brands, the people and the products that online retailers are selling.
We’ve always believed that a Scottish Gin brand’s story shouldn’t end as soon as the bottle is sealed and leaving the distillery destined for a wholesaler or retailer. As consumers, we feel that the stories, the details, the magic behind the brands and products is often missing or outdated when visiting online retailers. We see this as a missed opportunity to educate and inspire the consumer. To provide the consumer with the information and details about a product or brand that sticks with them. It’s these small things that often end up creating long term relationships between a consumer and a brand. And yes, not everyone wants to know the details behind the product, brand, and people; they simply want to view and buy. But for us, buying a Scottish Gin from an online retailer should be a place where you can learn, discover and explore, not only how a Scottish Gin is made, but where it comes from and how it tastes.
When we launched our Scottish Gin directory in April 2018 as the world’s largest, most in-depth directory of Scottish Gin, we set out to provide complete transparency surrounding production. Where and how Scottish Gin is being made and by who. Key botanicals, flavours, back story and more – our A-Z of Scottish Gin has proven to be an educational resource for anyone looking to discover the true story of Scottish Gin. We believe we have an opportunity as the premium resource for Scottish Gin to help further support our members and inspire the consumer.
We love what we do and we want to continue supporting our members and helping our audience discover Scottish Gin. To do this we’re about to launch the next stage of The Gin Cooperative with our online shop. It’s always been something we’d hoped to do at some stage but seeing our members traditional routes to market literally disappear overnight due to Covid, we feel 2020 is the year for us to finally launch our online shop. We’ve invested our time and resources and have been working with one of the UK’s best e-commerce specialists, MTC, who are helping us with our new e-commerce platform. We’re super excited to let everyone see what we’ve created and the amazing array of over 100 Scottish Gins we’ll be stocking at launch. Many of these gins are currently only available from the gin maker directly or limited high street retailers.
Revenue generated through our shop will be used to help us grow our platform for Scottish Gin, continue supporting our members and provide us with additional resources we can use for investment in our future plans. While initially we will purchase from a small group of distributors, long term we hope to be in place where we can buy all or most of our stock directly from our members. Logistically and commercially this route poses a number of obstacles right now, but this is our long term ambition to support our members with direct sales.
We’re super excited to see what the future holds for Scottish Gin and The Gin Cooperative and we’re extremely grateful to all our members who have supported us and helped us continue to grow. Our focus is, and always will be, to inspire, educate and help the consumer discover and enjoy the drink we love – Scottish Gin.