When to talk price, and when to not

In a presentation to consumers, there is a simple formula for when to talk price.

For more expensive/premium wine ($40 and over retail), talk about price at the forefront of the presentation.

For less expensive wine ($20 and under retail), talk about price at the end of the presentation.

The logic is simple, but incredibly important. When talking about more expensive wine it’s easy for us to forget how few people actually buy it. In terms of percentages of sales, very few people have ever paid more than $30 for a bottle of wine, much less for $50 or more, and hardly any for $80 or more. This means everybody’s definition of “luxury” or “premium” or “reserve” is different in relation to their budgets and comfort level.

If a consumer sits through a full presentation of a wine, with all the right buzzwords being said, you still don’t know what their definition of affordability is. If they think the wine you’re pouring will be $25 a bottle and then at the end you say it’s $80 a bottle, you’ve not only lost them but have added to their cynicism about some wines being stupidly expensive.

However, if you anchor the conversation from the very beginning with “This wine is $80 a bottle …” then you have positioned them and their expectations relative to their own experiences. The success rate will go up. At the very least many consumers will say “I’ve never actually had an $80 bottle before.”

Conversely, when pitching/presenting affordable wines, talk up all the attributes, talk about more expensive competitors in the category, talk about the labor intensive farming and low yields, then at the very end say “Oh, and it’s only $14.”

The close of the sale for affordable wine happens with the revelation of a surprisingly affordable price.

The close of the sale for premium wine begins with the price, followed by explanation and justification for the price.

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