The Grapevine

The Business of Marketing Your Wine Shop

March 7th, 2017

Though we devote most Wednesday posts to the how-to of marketing as well as some of the concepts behind the marketing we should all be doing, sometimes it’s worth looking at marketing your wine shop from the business perspective. [level-members]

The reason for that is captured pretty neatly in this Drinks Business article, Wine’s Apparent Neglect of Marketing. Not only does that article quote

a UK critic who wrote how, when considering a wine, “it’s the one with the more straightforward package that gets my cash every time – the one that suggests the producer has spent their time and money on the contents rather than dreaming up an unnecessary ‘brand story.’”

But it also goes on to discuss the great success that LEGO has had in creating n “architecture” line that relies on brand and backstory to sell the same basic interlocking bricks at a tremendous premium.

So which is it for wine? Well, like a lot of marketing, it depends, though frequently it comes down to the idea of authenticity. (Which is especially critical for most younger consumers, like Millennials.) If a brand’s story seems like real – if it seems plausible that there really was, for example, a Betty Crocker – then consumers are more likely to embrace that story. You’ll find a lot of craft beer fans who don’t think much of Blue Moon based on nothing more than the fact that it wasn’t really founded in someone’s garage.

Whether that’s fair or not – what’s in the bottle should matter more than anything else – it is reality. And it will affect how your products, and even your shop, are perceived by your target audience.

This is where it’s helpful to get an outside opinion. The distance they’ll have from your shop gives them an inherently valuable perspective that you’ll have a hard time creating on your own. And they’ll help you navigate your way to the productive middle ground between “Madison Ave. BS” and no branding at all. [/level-members]