February 10, 2021
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This pandemic has forced businesses across all industries to find new and innovative solutions to keep their operations afloat.
Talking about the wine industry, wineries have been asked by the government to close their cellar doors, cancel their tasting events, which for some small and medium wineries, accounts for a significant part of their revenue streams.
In times like this, wineries and vineyards, in California, are redefining their communication and are attracting consumers via DTC sales and Virtual Winery Tours and Tastings.
A normal winery tour includes a walk in the vineyard, a look at the wine-making process, and a sip of the flagship varietals offered. And a virtual tour replicates this experience for consumers via a 360 degree tour of the vineyard, a video explaining the wine-making process and includes an expert demonstrating the experience that consumers normally get at an actual tasting event.
One such brand in California is St. Supery Winery. They’re hosting a weekly virtual tour series “Injoy @ Home” where every Thursday they talk about different spheres of their winery, say, one about their varietals and another about the geographical location of their vineyard.
In every virtual tour, CEO Emma Swain, winemaker Michael Scholz, estate chef Tod Kawachi and thier special guests explore the winemaking, terroir and pairing philosophy of a different St.Supéry Estate wine each week.
This is a great way to connect with your customers in a more personalised way. While everyone is at home during quarantine, you can engage your brand with your target audience in a way that makes your brand apart from your competitors.
Even though the tasting gallery of Jessup Cellars, a winery located in Washington Street Yountville, CA, is temporarily closed, they are offering virtual experiences every week. It includes live videos, personal one-on-one experience to large group gatherings, and a simple guided tasting in the comfort of their customers’ home.
While other business operations are closed, your winery can also focus on building your online presence and strengthening your social media connections within the industry. With live videos on Facebook, Jessup Cellars, are not only engaging with their target audience but also increasing their social media followers.
Now, more than ever, people are online, they are engaging with brands and listening to what they have to offer. Leverage it to get new eyes on your winery and most importantly to offer them an experience which triggers your audience to visit your vineyard once everything is back to normal.
Talking about re-aligning your revenue streams during the pandemic, your winery can also integrate online sales and virtual experience together in a bundle.
Look at how Clos Du Val, a winery in Napa Valley, is integrating their online sales and virtual tasting with their "Tasting at your Table" experience.
What they have done is, created virtual tasting packages, where customers get a complimentary virtual tasting experience if they buy one of these packages. Once the purchase is completed, they give that customer a call and schedule a live, one-on-one, personal tasting. This way, customers can enjoy their wines at home while on a virtual tasting tour with Clos Du Val winery.
If you’re a winery, this is the right time to adapt virtual tasting experience as one of the most important revenue streams in this difficult time. Businesses that are always ready to adapt to the external environment, whether positive or negative, are the ones that thrive and come out even stronger.