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Training a bartender army

An innovative, sector-leading training programme designed to grow the on trade spirits category, improve customer service and enhance the profitability of the bars themselves.


Rather than purely focusing on growing short-term sales, the broader objective was to create long-term growth that, although category-led, would maximise sales opportunities for Diageo brands. This called for a wide-ranging communications strategy that would include: perfect serve techniques, premiumisation, increasing spirits category knowledge and raising consumer expectations.

All of this would require a step-change from the traditional approach of creating ‘one-size-fits-all’ on trade campaigns.


Armed with countless years of on trade experience, the team identified the issues to be tackled at source. Step-by-step, the framework of Diageo Bar Academy took shape, evolving from its predecessor the esp (every serve perfect) programme. From workstation efficiencies to spirits knowledge, signature serves to cocktail-making workshops… Diageo Bar Academy is rich in insight, packed with innovation and grounded in practical know-how.

With thousands of bartenders trained each year, a myriad of tailored training programmes, hundreds of social media posts and an ever-growing database, the Bar Academy team is able to continuously track KPIs, consistently proving the enormous value of Diageo Bar Academy back to the business.



Bartenders benefiting from Diageo Bar Academy training every year


The average sales uplift resulting from our on trade training programmes – Nielsen independent audit


of the most successful ROI generators of any programme in Diageo’s history

Being alive to...

…the way social media shapes consumer experiences and how new technologies influence serves and service, enabling us to evolve Bar Academy to support our trainers and ensure they make the biggest impact in every bar.

For more information about our F&B expertise, visit our specialist hub.

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