A fresh perspective and a proper plan are what’s needed to get 8 million South Africans to prefer wine to any other drink.
“We have unbelievable potential to be successful in the South African wine market – we just need to take a step back and get a fresh perspective on how we do things,” said Carlen Wahl, marketing specialist at a recent Local Market Workshop.
The workshops, which are held in the respective winegrowing regions in August and September, form part of the wine industry’s new strategy to grow local sales volumes from 350 to 450 million litres from 2015 to 2025, along with value growth. It is an initiative of VinPro and the Wine Industry Strategic Exercise (WISE).
The traditional market for wine drinkers is set to contract by 2025, and the industry is increasingly tapping into new consumer segments. Following comprehensive research, four consumer groups were identified that are predominantly black, at different life stages and with specific need states and varying exposure or affinity to wine.
Here are some of the take-home messages from the Local Market Workshops. Be sure to read the November issue of WineLand magazine for a full review of the wine industry’s new Local Market Strategy.
Put the consumer at the heart of what you do
In every step along the way towards creating your wine, think about the person who will be holding the glass in his or her hand. “Are they single or do they have a family, what is their occupation, what do they do on weekends, what do they aspire to?” said Brendan Mitchell of Grand Studios at the workshop.
People love other people’s stories
But people are also driven my emotions. Your story will really stick with them if you can relate it to something that resonates with them on an emotional level.
The element of surprise
Don’t expect the Bouj’wa, Go-getta, Striving Suburban or Loxion Dreamer to rock up at the next wine show. Be the unexpected, vibey wine hotspot at the next soccer event, stokvel or fashion show.
Get in on the dialogue
Potential wine consumers are the majority of SABC’s viewership. Local celebrities with cooking shows often spark dialogue on social media about wine-related topics. However, brands have not been attuned to this to take advantage. Know what your target market’s celebs are saying on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. And listen to rap, as it is a social commentary about what’s happening in their worlds.
Have a SMART plan
A marketing plan doesn’t just help you create a blueprint of your business goals and expectations; it’s also an opportunity to reflect on how you’re going to meet those objectives. By following the SMART approach, you’ll ensure your plan is specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound. “There’s no need to reinvent the wheel; rather take a look at what you’re good at and identify which small tweaks can make a big difference,” said Carlen.
Tell (and ask) them why wine
The true measure of success is when you will be able to match your wine’s approach with a consumer’s need when they say “I drink wine because …”.