Putting wine statements in context

The purpose of an in-store tasting at a wine retailer is not to show a ton of choices to the consumer.

The purpose of joining a wine club is not the convenience of having four wines delivered every quarter and automatically charged to your credit card.

The purpose of using good stemware in your restaurant is not to make the wine taste better.

Let’s put these statements in context.

The in-store tasting is not a mechanism to increase sales. Pouring more wines doesn’t equate to more sales. In fact the opposite is true: too much choice is often a bad thing. The context of the in-store tasting is all about consumer confidence of a decision, but the irony is they want the decision made for them to begin with. The tasting simply validates the conclusion.

Joining a wine club is not about convenience, for there are a ton of services out there that will deliver wine to you whenever you want it. It is about having what your neighbors don’t, or it’s about continuing a connection to a place that you visited, and people you met, and memories of a time. So if you are running or building a wine club, talking about convenience distracts from the real purpose. Keep it in context.

Few people have tasted the same wine out of multiple glasses, and in some studies where the glass was held by a mechanical robot arm and swirled for a blindfolded drinker, a mason jar performed as well as a $30 stem. But we don’t let robots swirl for us. In a restaurant we start by seeing the elegant and higher quality stems in the room, and then we know we are in a wine-serious environment. We pick up the glass. The thin stem reflects elegance and just plain feels great. The clear crystal, polished ahead of service, looks awesome in the candlelight…. it has already added value to the experience even before smelling and tasting the wine.

Know the true context of what you’re trying to achieve.


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