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Going Pro | 1 Wine Dude - Page 18

Posts Filed Under going pro

Wake Up, Wine People: Boomers Won’t Be Buying Your Wine Forever

Vinted on July 20, 2011 binned in best of, commentary, going pro, wine industry events

Although the conclusion implied in the title of today’s post probably seems obvious to many (i.e., a company/brand has to eventually court younger customers because older customers will not be able to buy their products forever), it’s worth providing some background (and a pertinent example), because otherwise this post would be really, really short (and god knows I’m not a fan of that – pithy, yes, but succinct, no).

Aaaaaand… I’ve got Millennial wine interaction on my mind, given the topic of this weekend’s panel discussion at the upcoming 2011 Wine Bloggers Conference

Below is an embed of a podcast created and originally posted by the guys over at (the excellent) Wine Biz Radio, which in part covers the Nomacorc-sponsored “Marketing to the Next Generation of Wine Consumers” conference held at the CIA in Napa (here’s some of my vid from the same event – and yes, this is probably the last time I’m gonna talk about it, okay?).  Listening to the WBR episode reminded me that some (probably most) wine producers and/or their PR folks still aren’t talking to Millennials in a serious way, and if they are, they likely aren’t doing it in the way that Millennials themselves would prefer.

I’m not a Millennial, so don’t take my word for it – listen to the podcast: at about the 56-minute mark, WBR host Randy and I talk to Kayla Koroush, a twenty-something Millennial who more-or-less told the entire audience during my panel at the event that she was age-profiled when visiting a winery tasting room in California. I.e., no one wanted to talk to her, take her seriously, or treat her as an educated consumer (and, therefore, a likely potential customer).

The trouble with that approach, aside from it being economically stupid prima facie, is that this particular young woman was actually a very educated consumer – she works at a winery.  And she was willing to stand up and talk about her experience at an industry event attended by a few hundred people, who in turn went on to tweet, facebook-post and write about it…

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Talkin’ ‘Bout Their Wine G-G-G-Generation (Millennials And Wine At WBC11)

Vinted on July 13, 2011 binned in going pro, wine bloggers conference, wine industry events

Those of you planning on attending the upcoming 2011 Wine Bloggers Conference in Charlottesville, VA will have your choice of interesting break-out session panels during the afternoon of July 22nd. I’ll be moderating one of them, titled Millennials and Wine.

Millennials are Democratic (by a slight majority), thoroughly on-line and plugged daily into social networking tools, and (by a huge majority) sleep with their cellphones (really?) .  They are young enough that they might not get the reference mentioned in the title of today’s post.  They are fast becoming the wine consumers of the modern era, drinking a lot of the stuff (even in the shower… not sure I get that one entirely), especially if it has bubbles.

And there are nearly 25 million more of them than there are Gen Xers.

With a potential market that big,  if you’re even thinking about wine writing, wine blogging, wine sales, wine marketing, or wine making, you’d better start to understand what makes Millennials tick when it comes to wine.

And you’d better do it quickly

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Is It Time For Wine To Get The Like Button?

Vinted on July 6, 2011 binned in best of, commentary, going pro

We wine geeks review wines in all manner of differing ways.  There’s nearly as much variety in those review systems as there are in wine styles.  Points.  Stars.  In my case, grades and badges.

And we’re social about it, too – CellarTracker.com is pretty much the world’s largest wine review repository at this point (closing in on 2 million reviews at the time of this post), and for the most part it’s populated with ratings penned by people who are not professional wine critics; they just want to catalog – and share – their thoughts on their encounters with world’s most awesome beverage.

Seems to me the most social and dead-simplest wine review, though – one that even makes 140-character twitter reviews seem overly-verbose by comparison – would be the Like button.

Yes, I’m serious.  I think.

Of course, I’m talking about the thing that publicly alerts other Facebook users to the fact that enjoyed a post/status/photo/brand/etc. It might actually be more accurate to say that the Like button click means that you took a few seconds out of your busy day to tap on a button because other people also clicked on it, but that’s not the Like button’s fault (it’s more human nature’s fault).  You can lump Google’s recent foray into the social approval space – the +1 button – into the same camp, and feel free to use that interchangeably here whenever I mention the Like button (the concepts are, from what I can discern, pretty much identical – let people know publicly what you like in a social setting on-line). And the concept is now ubiquitous on the ‘global interwebs’: even blog comment systems have them for individual comments.  The Like button also refers people who buy, and when it does they buy more stuff. Only a matter of time before it takes over the wine world, right?

No points, ratings, or even words.  You dig the wine, you +1 it; you enjoy sipping that vino, you ‘Like’ it.  Done and dusted, end of discussion.

Or is it?…

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A Search For The Soul Of North American Wine Writing (Via South American Wine)

Vinted on June 29, 2011 binned in commentary, going pro, wine publications

I think traditional American wine-writing may have totally jumped the shark.

Yeah, I am actually going there.  And yeah, it will probably take around 1100 words.

You see, last week marked my (extremely) long-overdue second contribution to Nomad Editions’ iPad wine magazine, Uncorked. The long-overdue part is entirely my fault – things have been busy, as in senator-on-the-campaign-trail-trying-to-hide-his-mistresses-from-the-press level busy, enough so to keep me from contributing weekly.

The Uncorked story is titled “My Andean Adventure: One wine dude’s search for the soul of South American wine” and it’s core topic is more-or-less my bout with the Chilean version of Montezuma’s Revenge (you know the title isn’t mine, because I would have called it “Joe’s Colon Vs. The Diabolically Banal South American Budget Wines” or something similarly tasteless), and includes photos of mine as well, taken on a camera that costs less than $200, and so marks one of the few times that I’ve also been a contributing photographer (cue eye-rolling from any serious photographer reading this).  You’ll have to subscribe to read the article, but at less than $1 per month for a weekly wine mag that includes regular contributors like Tom Johnson (of Louisville Juice) and sommelier / award-winning author Courtney Cochran, you’d have to be a pretty hard-ass cheapskate wine lover to pass it up.

The thing that got me musing about wine writing jumping the shark was that my first draft of the Andean wine travels article was rejected summarily by Uncorked’s editor, (writer and winemaker) Stephen Yafa.  Stephen’s words from the Editor’s Note of last week’s issue:

“When Joe Roberts sent in his article on wine-touring in Chile and Argentina, the piece was wrong for all the right reasons. It was objective, balanced and unemotional. It wasn’t Uncorked, or Joe.”

Stephen is an excellent editor, and like all good editors he has knack for being right…

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