Who hasn’t dreamed of opening their own winery? Just spend your days in the sunshine wandering through gorgeous farmland, followed by a glass of your own vintage on a back porch as the sun sets. Of course the reality involves a ton of work. After all, your winery can’t be successful unless people are buying your bottles. That’s where effective winery marketing comes in.
What is a winery?
You can’t market a business properly if you don’t have a handle on what it is. It’s important to distinguish between a winery, a vineyard, and a wine cellar. Let’s break down their definitions.
A winery is a licensed building or property that produces wine. They vary in whether or not they have tasting rooms, can hold large events, can have weddings, and a number of other factors, all determined by what permits they hold.
A vineyard is a piece of land that has grapevines used for winemaking. It may or may not have the facilities for producing or selling their wine. In fact, many vineyards produce grapes that are used by separate wineries.
Wine cellars are places for storing wine. They don’t necessarily have to be a literal cellar, but they do have to be temperature controlled to help with the aging process. Wine cellars can be separate from the facilities for manufacturing or selling the wine.
What are some examples of good winery marketing?
Winery marketing doesn’t have to be complex. There are lots of ways you can get the word out about your brand.
Sell through wine clubs
One popular way for people to discover a new wine is by joining a wine club. This is a subscription service in which consumers pay to have curated wines delivered to their home. Wine clubs can make up to 33% of an average winery’s income. Adding your winery to a club can get you connected with curious consumers. And of course, make sure you’re connecting yourself to a reputable wine club.
Host (virtual) events
Events and brand activations are a great way to bring people to your business and connect with consumers one on one. With COVID-19, that’s not feasible, but you can bring people to your winery online. Although it might seem limiting, you actually have the means online to host a wider variety of activities that you can control, such as:
- Blind wine tastings
- Online classes on wine production
- Tour your facilities behind the scenes
Or really any activity, even if it doesn’t seem to directly connect with the winemaking process and business. Showcase your community, other local businesses or charities, whatever you want while showing off your winery and making connections.
Offer tasting packages
Give your potential customers a taste of what they’re missing. 48% more people will purchase something after they have a chance to sample it. This doesn’t have to happen only at your winery, either. You can set up a pop up shop in places where you might find eager wine customers, like farmer’s markets or festivals. There are even software tools, like Overproof Tastings, to help you track and manage consumer data at these events.
Become a source of knowledge
People are often intimidated by wine, feeling like it’s a world filled with hidden, arcane knowledge. Use your experience and teach your potential customers. Fill your website and social media with information that can aid and inform your consumers. Answer their questions. They’ll feel heard and you’ll be making personal connections with people who will want to buy your wares.
Use social media
Any winery marketing is going to involve social media. But you don’t have to be a social media guru for your business. All you need to do is post regularly and with some sort of purpose and strategy. Just like with hosting virtual events, you can use the platform to do nearly anything as long as it’s tied to your winery. Use your imagination.
Winery marketing – like any alcohol marketing – isn’t rocket science, but it does require some thought and creativity.
What is the difference between a winery, a vineyard, and a cellar?
A winery is where the wine is produced, while a vineyard is where the grapes for it are grown and a cellar is where it is stored and aged.
What is the best wine club to join?
Some popular budget wine clubs include:
And for curated wine clubs:
What are some good ways to market my winery?
Good winery marketing can involve selling through wine clubs, hosting events, offering tastings, providing knowledge, and regularly using social media.