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The ground-breaking 2021 Direct-to-Consumer Impact Report from WineDirect and Enolytics focuses on what wineries need to do now to sustain and improve their wine sales. According to the report, website sales have “settled at a level that far exceeds pre-pandemic highs, almost doubling from 2019.”
Everyone is shopping for everything online now, and as the data proves, this includes wine. This means that your winery’s online real estate must match the quality, reputation, and style of your actual tasting room and products. The look and feel of any virtual touchpoints remind shoppers of your brand and the reason they chose your bottles over millions of others.
How can your winery capitalize on the changing landscape of ecommerce and website sales to attract and retain consumers? Outshinery has proven and recommended ways to make it happen for your winery by using their 3D artistry for flawless and consistent wine bottle photography.
Stay Top-of-Mind with Repeat Buyers
"The importance of using your existing consumer base to keep DTC business afloat and grow became even more apparent." The report highlights that repeat buyers and club members accounted for 94% of sales during the height of the pandemic. Thankfully, those days seem to be behind us, but it is still important to realize the value of marketing your products in ways that are fresh, seasonal, and unique to these valuable clients who may have already purchased or considered these bottles.
Laurie Millotte, Outshinery’s founder, likens bottle photography with a regular camera to trying to take a selfie in a house of mirrors. Lots of glare and distracting reflective qualities. Still, a winery needs at least one bottle of shot of each and every product — and that’s at a minimum. “Wineries spend a lot of time and money getting just a few assets, most likely just the bottle shot, and they have to constantly recycle and use the same ones,” she says. If your consumers haven’t seen your wines depicted differently than they did in 2020 and 2021, how will the product get their attention and suscitate interest?
Lifestyle Images showcase your product in a setting that helps people see how the wine will fit into their lives, and this allows wineries to keep it diverse and interesting. Some of Outshinery’s best-selling images illustrate a bottle at a dinner party surrounded by friends, or served on the table for pizza night. Maybe a club member bought the wine last year to give as a gift, and this year they’ll see that bottle of wine as more versatile, and decide to buy a few to enjoy in their own home!
Images keep your customers interested with easy and consistent pings. Keeping these pings fresh means your messaging doesn’t grow stale or allow your brand to disappear into the background when people think about other things in their lives, such as competing beverage categories or the various items they spend time and money on regularly.
Wine brands may be tempted to focus on pulling in new customers (which images can also do) but they shouldn’t neglect those current customers when there’s potential to nurture them into new purchases. Google data shows that people need seven hours of interaction, spanning 11 touchpoints over four different locations.* If a winery has already earned that trust through literally hours of hard work, it shouldn’t let it slip away by taking these valuable people for granted. Show them something new!
Use Group Shots to Sell More Wine
Another way Outshinery clients sell more wine is by displaying bottle lineups to compel buyers to purchase in bundles or consider joining the wine club. “If you’re working to build your Wine Club, know that it’s a big leap for a consumer to go from not knowing you to joining your Club,” writes the report authors. “Ease new contacts along the journey by inviting them to take small steps first - joining your email list, visiting your winery, purchasing a 3-bottle bundle."
“Group shots allow wineries to showcase new or unknown wines next to best-sellers and fan favorites,” says Laurie. This helps shoppers consider buying wines that perhaps they wouldn’t click on, but when they see next to a wine that they already love, open that door to a totally fresh purchase. Outshinery group shots can always be kept up to date, unlike traditional photography. If one of the wines in the image sells out or needs a vintage update, no problem. “The last thing you want is to falsely advertise a product, get people engaged and excited but actually not having it available for sale,” says Laurie.
Group shots also give a sense of the scope of the winery or the wine brand. They identify the different levels within the portfolio, such as reserve and premium versus everyday wine. This helps Outshinery clients tell the story of what kind of products they are making, giving an overall projection of their values and focus points.
Consider Using Food to Promote Your Wine
The 2021 Direct-to-Consumer Impact Report encourages segmenting winery communications, but not simply on how much customers have spent: “Dig into what they’ve purchased, how much they’ve purchased per transaction, what times of the year they tended to purchase wine and whether they bought online and also onsite.” This means that your marketing team should be prepared to send messaging that responds to each segment. A way to get to their hearts is time-honored: through their stomachs.
One of the most exciting products that Outshinery clients use is customized recipe packs that pair with their actual wine, which is also depicted and explained on the card. These are professionally written recipes, styled and photographed by a team of artists who understand how to create dishes with wine in mind. Go behind the scenes to learn more.
Laurie believes these are the next evolution of tasting notes and tech sheets, because instead of simply relying on facts and figures, these actually show a real-life meal with which this wine can be enjoyed. These work double time as a banding opportunity for wineries and an educational tool for wine lovers. A short tasting note and spot for accolades and winery description provide ways to make clients familiar with the brand and product. “This is something that can be created on-demand and quickly turned around, and it really helps to mix it up easily and on a budget to keep customers and your audience engaged,” says Laurie.
Think Seasonally, Plan Strategically
The report states that wineries should begin planning by establishing an annual calendar. “Know that seasonality will be different for different channels. POS is increasing from February through October, while Online Sales are peaking based on holidays.”
To prep for top holidays like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and even Valentine’s Day sign up to receive Outshinery’s free Marketing Calendars, which are released each quarter and have all the holidays and important wine days, plus inspiration on how to communicate with wine loving audiences via social media, email, and club communications. This downloadable resource even includes a place to write your own notes and dates.
It’s an old adage that the report proves to be true: “It’s a lot more efficient, and a lot less expensive, to sell to existing consumers than to acquire new consumers.” With a few easy and budget-friendly assets from Outshinery, your brand and products get a fresh look that drives sales.
Check out outshinery.com to learn more and get your first Bottle Shot and Lifestyle Image for free.
Outshinery uses 3D tech to create flawless product images for the wine industry. Online everything, and hassle free, without the need to coordinate external professionals or ship physical samples. Bottle Shots, Lifestyle Images, Product Videos, and more.
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DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE COPY OF OUR 2021 DTC IMPACT REPORT.
LEARN HOW WINEDIRECT CAN HELP YOU TAKE YOUR DTC SALES TO THE NEXT LEVEL.