Thursday, March 28, 2019

I Can't Take the Lunacy!

This might be the shortest blog I've ever penned, but I've got to get this off my chest.

In the 2019 SVB State of the Industry Report I pointed out some changes we as a wine industry are facing, including the lack of engagement by our younger consumers which I attribute in part to the cumulative negative health messaging coming from neo-prohibitionists.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Annual Direct to Consumer Survey Closes this Week

Every year SVB and Wine Business Monthly collaborate on a survey that maps out the changes in direct to consumer wine sales - providing benchmarks to respondents that are invaluable in day to day business, and equally important as we chart new paths and channels to sell wine.

The 2019 survey closes this week. Join the hundreds and hundreds of wineries who have already taken the survey this year [Take the Survey]

Take the above chart for instance which was a product of last year's survey. In it, we can see that for the first time, there are more tasting rooms being built than wineries. Why? Because wineries all believe they need a tasting room to sell direct. But is that true? The answer is that not all tasting rooms are necessary, but client experience is necessary even if there isn't a tasting room

Sunday, March 3, 2019

The SVB Annual Direct to Consumer Survey is Open

Today more than ever, the wine industry needs to be more strategic and proactive in their direct to consumer strategy and execution. The business is rapidly changing and will over the next five years cause whiplash for those not buckled in.

Improving and evolving direct sales strategies will be the difference between success and failure in the coming decade as the industry's consumer evolves under our feet, anti-alcohol groups continue to push their agenda, and competition from beer, spirits and foreign wine intensifies.

How do I know that? It seems a little grandiose to make those kinds of statements. If I were you, those are the types of statements I'd ignore as hyperbole and click-bait. Blah-blah-blah. But am I just running off at the mouth for effect?

      The Real Deal

Those who follow this blog know that I extensively research the industry annually and provide the findings in the SVB State of the Industry Report in January. This time of year, I dig in to the direct to consumer segment as Silicon Valley Bank and Wine Business Monthly collaborate on an annual nationwide survey, targeting direct to consumer wine sales. All this is done on a gratis basis to help the industry make decisions.

This effort is so important to industry success, that every major industry association on the West Coast and many others from around the country actively support the project.

Last year, we had about 10% of the industry complete the survey, providing a statistically significant sample by bottle price, years in business, location, and case size. (Top chart by case.)

The survey is opens as of now, and it will close on March 22nd, at which point SVB will contribute substantial time and resources to analyze the data, turning it into relevant information for the wine community. If you are thinking about participating, you should also ask, "How will it be used?"

In May, all respondents who complete the survey receive high-level analysis, benchmarks and the complete sanitized respondent data, anonymised of all personal and business identifying information. In June we will then broadcast a live videocast to the industry to go over the new findings. Last year's videocast is below if you are interested.

In April, Wine Business Monthly takes the findings SVB produces and puts together their own view, publishing their conclusions in the July issue (2017 WBM Tasting Room Edition - PDF). The effort is always substantial, but the rewards for wineries in benchmarking and understanding the current landscape has been priceless. 

This year the survey has approximately 30 questions and should take you no longer than 15 minutes to complete and even less if you are a little prepared. If you would like to see the questions in advance, you can download and print them here.

Are you ready to participate in the survey this year?

Please promote this post in your favorite social media platform, or even better - please forward the link to your winery colleagues and ask them to participate.

If you would like your AVA to participate, we will also send them free Regional Benchmarks for their own use, presuming we have a statistically significant sample size and an address to send the information.