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Creating New Markets for Sauce Company After the COVID Slump

Spring 2023

​​Hotshots, a sauce distribution company with a selection of barbeque and hot sauces, rubs, and snacks is owned and operated by Matt and Lauren Heald. The company was established in the late 1990s by Lauren’s uncle and was later bought by the couple in 2008. Since then, they’ve acquired hot sauce brands, expanded aggressively and focused on two sale channels: wholesale and direct to consumer (DTC) sales. ​​​Hotshots Inc. revenue has been declining for a few years now, with the biggest hit coming from the discontinuation of a major restaurant chain customer during Covid-19. The goal and scope of the project with NCGrowth was to revamp sales and marketing and explore other avenues to boost sales. ​​

NCGrowth has done a financial analysis on the current state of HotShot’s sales and sale channels. Based on these insights, a strategic roadmap was developed which included an Amazon launch strategy. NCGrowth created an Amazon storefront, optimized product listings with compelling visuals and persuasive descriptions, highlighting the sauce’s unique flavor profiles and versatility. NCGrowth also leveraged Amazon’s vine program to officially launch the product with sponsored reviews. Deliverables included an Amazon storefront, actionable recommendations, industry data analytics, and a forward-looking content strategy. Now that the first product line was officially launched on Amazon—Brew-B-Que Barbecue Sauces series which include IPA, Lager, and Porter beer flavors—the plan is to continue launching other product lines on Amazon as an additional sales channel.

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