Several weeks ago, the Wine Market Council unveiled their latest research on consumer wine consumption habits and the findings were that Millennials (those born between 1980 to the late 1990s) have taken over as the largest group of wine consumers in the United States. For many wineries who have long considered the Baby Boomer generation to be their target market, this new research might come as quite a surprise. According to the report, Millennials are not only consuming more wine, but they are also purchasing more premium and super-premium priced bottles.
As a winery owner it is critical to understand these trends, as they have can have a significant impact on your business. Have you spent the last few years catering to the wrong demographics? Is your marketing reflective of these changes? What changes do you need to make to target a younger population? These are all important questions to consider, if you have not already done so, in re-evaluating your annual marketing plan.
While a complete re-branding is not an option for many wineries, there are some small ways in which you can change your marketing strategy to reflect the most current wine consumption trends.
If your winery has no online presence, it should. As mentioned in a previous post, you really need to have a website to compete in the wine industry. Not only that, but Millennials (not to generalize) are ALWAYS using the Internet on their phones and tablets. Allowing people to easily access information about your brand and shop online for your product can make a world of difference for your business―because really, who doesn’t love being able to shop with a click of their smart phone?! That being said, if your website looks out-dated and is not using the latest technology, it is just not going to appeal to a younger demographic.
Utilize Social Media
This goes hand-in-hand with having a website. If you have a website, one of the easiest ways to generate traffic and increase your sales is by utilizing social media. If you can regularly create engaging content for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, you are guaranteed to see a difference in your web traffic. Social media is a great way to promote winery events and sales, and with inexpensive advertising, you can target very specific audiences (think: Millennial populations) who might be interested in your products. Ad targeting has almost never been easier or as cheap!
Start an Attractive Wine Club
A Wine Club is a great way for wineries to have guaranteed repeat buyers. If you want to target a younger population, try offering tiered membership levels that are more affordable for a wider range of consumers. Hold events that cater to a younger crowd and not necessarily over-the-top fancy wine dinners. There are many types of events you can hold for your younger wine members―yoga happy hours, wine and cheese release parties, art and/or photography exhibits promoting local artists and even having live bands at events.