Principles of Wine Marketing by Steve Goodman – the marketer’s handbook!

Dr Steve Goodman of the University of Adelaide Business School releases his new book ‘Principles of Wine Marketing’. Steve was interviewed late last year about his work in wine marketing – now he has produced a valuable resource for any student of marketing – particularly wine!

Using excerpts from the introduction of the book, this article gives an overview of its aims and content. Purchase details are available on the Winetitles webpage.

The aim of this book is to give you the insight and understanding of each of the key components and areas of marketing required to enable you to look at situations through a ‘marketing lens’. When confronted with a situation, looking at your own business or planning a new venture, it is intended you will be able to think in marketing terms, understand and appreciate the situation more fully as you will have developed the tools, frameworks and thinking needed to make better decisions, to create more opportunities for success and to deal with people who do have responsibility for marketing design and implementation.

The intention is to ensure you have access to developing your own thinking and plans – there are no right and wrong answers in marketing, so there is no way to teach people ‘how to do it’. What I can do is to present the fundamental marketing frameworks and theories, to explain them in wine marketing terms, to present examples and encourage you to develop your own thinking ability, your ability to pick up the ‘marketing lens’ and use it to lead your own thinking, planning and success.

We all have some experience of marketing! Many people studying marketing for the first time remark ‘I have no experience of/in marketing’. My remark to them is the same as here to you. You buy things, so you are subjected to messages from advertisers – some reach you, some don’t. You buy things in shops, you receive service (good and bad), you look for ways to do things better, quicker and with less cost. You see how hard some items are to find, and that some products are priced differently from others with similar traits.

To increase the learning you get as you work through this book and the associated frameworks there are several things you can do to increase your return on your investment of time and effort.

Become aware of your own behaviour as a consumer. When you are shopping for groceries look at where you look in the shop, at why you make a decision and what you simply put in the trolley. Look at the catalogues (junk mail) you read – look at the brands and product types that receive prominence. Be aware of the ads on the radio or television that get your attention – and what types of products they are.

Become critical thinkers of your own business. Look to what extent your organisation has considered the elements of the frameworks or theories. Make a list of what you need to look at in your own leadership or planning of the organisation’s efforts after you finish your course or the book.

Think about the wines you buy – if you don’t buy many different brands or at different price points, then start exploring! Look at the back labels, the price points, the types of people you think would buy the wine. Ask friends and people you know outside the industry what they buy, why they buy it and what they like about it. Ask them where they shop, where they go out to eat – and ask them to be blunt and honest with you.

Visit cellar doors – in your own region and further afield. Look at what is in the cellar door, the atmosphere and the service.

Talk with distributors, retailers and restaurateurs, importers and exporters whenever you get the opportunity – and start making some opportunities. Ask what they have found to be successful and listen to why they say some wineries aren’t successful.

Be aware of marketing rather than being a passive consumer. There is learning and development to be had all around you – ideas to be generated and success to be had if you develop your thinking and become an active part of the marketing thinking of your own organisation, wine and brand.

So if you want to master the marketing lens, get reading!

Dr Steve Goodman teaches at the University of Adelaide Business School. As well as supervising Honours, Masters and PhD students, he teaches: Marketing Communication (Undergraduate and Postgraduate), as well as Service Design & Marketing and Marketing in the MBA programme.

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