Pump Clips – Send the right message


Think about the last time you bought something that gave you pleasure. Steady now! I am thinking about a really nice meal, a fancy pair of shoes, a holiday in a glorious location or maybe a smart phone with all the trimmings. Think about where you bought that item and how it was advertised to you. Would still have bought that item if it had been presented to you on a bit of tatty paper and scribbled with a felt tip pen? I don’t think so. It simply doesn’t give the right impression. It doesn’t say, “I am a great product and worth you spending money on”. Yet a lot of pubs think customers will part with their cash if presented with a scrawled note on a tatty bit of paper. We are talking about hand written pump clips. I know it is frustrating when the brewery fails to send you the pump clip or maybe it got lost behind the till. It is tempting to hand write a pump clip, but unless you are graphic artist, avoid hand written clips on flimsy paper. It just doesn’t give a good impression of your beer.

Make sure you have the proper clip at the time the beer is delivered. Don’t wait until it is ready to come on – that will be too late.

I have seen pubs that have hand written pump clips that look fantastic (eg Coach and Horses, Harvington) but only because they are all handwritten by someone with artistic writing skills. And if a brewery can’t supply you with a decent pump clip – maybe it is time to find another brewery? If you need multiple copies of the pump clip and only have one proper one, then I’ve seen pubs (eg Ladybird, Bromsgrove) that print out pump clips in colour using the original artwork from the brewery. With a colour inkjet printer, the brewery website and a pair of scissors you can make an attractive display for the second lounge especially if placed on a display board with beer descriptions.

Brett Says: Throw out any hand written pump clips. Adopt a regime and routine of checking you have a pump clip when beer is delivered. Get art work from breweries and print out in colour additional copies for rooms that are away from the main bar. Consider whether you want to buy from breweries or wholesalers that don’t provide pumb clips.

Show your face!

Would you turn your back to a customer when they are talking to you? What sort of message would that give about you and your pub? It says you are not interested in them. You have nothing to say. End of.

Of course you wouldn’t do that and yet across the country customers are frequently faced with the butt end of a pump clip.

A turned pump clip is not pretty and gives the wrong message to your customers. It gives the impression that your beer is not important. Think of all those expensive keg fonts on your bar. A lot of money has been spent designing and producing them and for a very good reason. A smart, well designed dispense is associated with a quality product!

I know it is tempting to turn a pump clip round when a beer has gone, but please don’t be tempted to do it. Not even for five minutes when you are pulling through a new cask. Best bar practice is to take the pump clip off – even if it means having to find that screwdriver! It will be worth it. Don’t show your back side.

Brett says: Adopt a regime to never turn around pump clips. Make sure your staff are aware. Keep a small screwdriver near the bar and make sure all staff know where it is.

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