22 Feb 2011
I’ve been on an SEO / SEM (search engine marketing) kick lately. As a new business owner, I’m starting to see the value of proper placement, key search term optimization, and Google (or Bing) ranking. In a previous post I wrote about how properly tagged blog posts can generate long term recurring traffic and how Google loves linkbacks (being referenced in other people’s blog posts). With Nectar Tasting Room opening, I’m more in tune with how people can find me online and being a part of the search terms people are using for wine tasting and wine events in Spokane.
If you have a business, you NEED to be thinking about where you rank in Google search. If you sell shoes in Sheboygan or parakeets in Poughkeepsie, Google search will improve your customer conversion. I will go as far as to say that focusing on search engine listing is the single best investment a business can make in their bottom line.
I recently had a conversation with a local search engine guru / god…okay, his name is Ed from Sixth Man Marketing about an upcoming search engine optimization seminar in Spokane. If you live here, I strongly encourage you to go (details below). If you don’t live here, well, your loss because Spokane is a really cool place. Regardless, Ed (a.k.a. SEO guru/god) was kind enough to provide FIVE SEO/SEM tips just for my readers. Shhhh…don’t share this post. It’s just for those that read this blog. P.S. Stay tuned at the end of the post for the amazing details on the upcoming Get Listed University seminar.
FIVE SEO TIPS
- Make sure your business information is consistent across the web. Do an audit of your brand and make sure the references you find are the same. Update any inaccuracies and make sure your business name and particular is consistent.
- Test categories in Google Places. Look to see if the categories you think will be a good choice for you produces a local search result (map). Test the categories that make sense for your business and track them to see which ones work best for you.
- Make sure your address and phone number are prominently listed on your site. This can be a sub-page but make sure they aren’t just in the footer. A page that calls our your address and phone number helps a lot. Also 800 numbers can really throw the search engines off. Use your local number if at all possible.
- Understand what citations mean to local search. The Get Listed Resources page has great information about them.
- Once you understand what they are, I recommend using the Whitespark Citation Finder to track them down.
GET LISTED UNIVERSITY
Spend a whole day with industry experts and search engine optimization pros at Northern Quest Resort and Casino on February 25 from 8AM – 5PM. Your fee includes…
- A full-day workshop to accommodate the amount of content & questions
- Classroom style seating for easier (and more comfortable) note taking
- A lab area for hands-on training! Get personalized advice from our experts.
- Updated presentations with the latest information about the Google & Bing search algorithms.
- More local success stories. Hear how last year’s attendees (and a few others) made HUGE gains.
- Lunch and snacks. After all, what’s a seminar without lunch and snacks.
- Free follow up class at LaunchPadINW Lounge for the first 40 people who register
Use the discount code “LAUNCHPADINW” and save $30 off the $149 price
VISIT http://www.sixthmanmarketing.com/get-listed-spokane for all the details! If you don’t go, you’re sorta silly!
11 Feb 2011
No child should die with unfulfilled dreams. The Wishing Star foundation is one of the true heroes of this world, providing hope and fulfilling dreams to children who live with the impending threat and stress of terminal illness. These young children live their lives with thoughts of doctor’s visits, tests, pain, and medication. The Wishing Star Foundation helps to fulfill dreams of vacations, room makeovers, trips to Disneyworld, Hollywood experiences, and meeting famous people. As individuals in Spokane (and across the internet) it may seem overwhelming for us to do our part. How can we help?
Taste your way to fulfilled dreams. Friday, March 4, at the Northern Quest Resort and Casino, you can taste your way through delicious treats and local wine knowing that with each sip and with each nibble you are making another wish come true. Last year’s event drew over 800 people and raised more than $18,000. This year promises to be even bigger.
Coordinator Taryn Erickson got involved with Wishing Star after a family friend, who was a “wish child” passed away. She watched the miracles first hand and was compelled to be involved. Spokane has 40+ active wishes including 21 year old Andrew who has a rare cancer of the bone. Andrew was diagnosed as a teenager and has given up school, college, job to fight this monster into remission. Your attendance can help fulfill his wish!
This year your $30 ticket (and any additional taste tickets you buy), go to fulfill the wishes of Adrienne, Mitchell, and Evett.
Adrienne’s wish: Adrienne is four years old and suffers from heart defects. Her wish is to have a castle playhouse. Spokane Home Builder’s Apprenticeship Program is currently building the playhouse, but funds are needed for the materials!
Mitchell’s wish: Mitchell is twelve years old and suffers from brachman de lange syndrome. His wish is to go to a NASCAR race. With your help, we are hoping to send Mitchell to a race during the next NASCAR season.
Evett’s wish: Evett is nine years old and suffers from heart complications as well. Her wish is to go to Orlando, Florida. She wants to go to Disneyworld, Universal Studios and the beach. She would like to travel on her birthday this July.
Nectar Tasting Room and Spokane Wine Magazine are proud to be a part of this event and look forward to joining several amazing tasting tables provided by:
- Arbor Crest Wine Cellars
- Chocolate Myracles
- Christ Kitchen
- Coeur d’Alene Cellars
- Dry Falls Cellars
- Dry Fly Distilling
- EMVY Cellars
- Georgetown Brewing/Manny’s
- Hay J’s Bistro
- Iron Horse Brewery
- Just American Deserts
- Marsells Cakes and Desserts
- Masselow’s at Northern Quest
- Mary Hill Winery
- MJ’s Chocolate Fountain
- Mountain Dome Winery
- Nectar Tasting Room
- Northern Lights Brewery
- NQ Banquet and Conference Services
- Pend d’Oreille Winery
- Pixie Dust Chocolates
- Rocky Mountain Chocolates
- Taste of India
- Tom Sawyer Country Coffee
- Townshend Cellars
When: Friday, March 4 from 6-10 p.m.
Where: Northern Quest Casino (discounted room rates available)
Three things draw me to Cana’s Feast Winery; 1) the biblical tie to their name with Jesus’ first miracle as he turned water into wine at the wedding in Cana, 2) An Oregon winery that uses lots and lots of Washington fruit, 3) Tamara Belgard – a friend I met on Twitter who used social media to land a marketing job at the winery!
Cana’s Feast Winery is located about an hour south and west of Portland, OR sand south of the Yamhill wine area. Located in a Tuscan style villa in Carlton, OR, Cana’s Feast focuses on several Italian varietals (Nebbiolo, Primitivo, Barbera), and Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Counoise, and Pinot Noir. With price points under $30 (except the Pinot Noir), Cana’s Feast offers a good selection of well priced quality wines.
This 100% Barbera is grown in Washington from Coyote Canyon and Ciel du Cheval vineyards and is aged in a combination of new and neutral French oak. The aroma was bull of under-ripe (green) berries with reminders of Christmas tree fragrance. In the mouth the wine is slightly disjointed with strong acidity and tart raspberry. Admittedly, I am not a huge Barbera fan and know that this wine would be rockin’ with a big plate of spaghetti. For sippin’, I would pass on this wine but would definitly give it a go with food. At $22, I can give this a 3/5.
Hands down, the best 100% Counoise I’ve ever had! Okay, honestly this was the first 100% Counoise I’ve ever had. I was excited to try this Chateauneuf –du- Pape region blending grape. The wine hails from Washington’s Coyote Canyon vineyards and was aged in once used and neutral French oak. With a high alcohol of 14.9%ABV the wine has a vibrant aroma of cherry fruit and a subtle hint of perfume. The medium acidity is balanced out by the semi-sweet cherry flavors and medium fine tannin. With only 116 cases made, this wine alone is worth a trip to Cana’s Feast. With a retail price of $25, I want this wine again! 4/5
With a strong pedigree of 75% Ciel du Cheval fruit and 25% Coyote Canyon fruit, the 100% varietal Cab Franc started strong with good aroma of blueberry and bell pepper. In the mouth the wine is above average but doesn’t provide the wow-factor that I equate with other Cab Franc’s in my memory bank. At $29, this is a good wine that showcases the quality of Ciel du Cheval fruit. The nearly 15%ABV alcohol is balanced by the fruit and acidity without being overwhelming. A good wine that doesn’t quite live up to its pedigree 3+/5
2007 Cana’s Feast Primitivo
With a heritage from Croatia and closely tied to Zinfandel, Primitivo can be a big, jammy Italian wine. When tasting Primitivo, I make immediate mental comparisons to some of my favorite Zinfandels that hail from California. Only a few Washington vineyards produce Primitivo. 100% of the fruit comes from Coyote Canyon. The BIG 15.5%ABV is hidden underneath the thick berry and spice. The fruit flavors are strong on the front palate with an odd off acidity on the back palate. The wine has more layers than a typical $10 California Zin, but lacks the structure to compete with the $25 Seghesio Zins. A solid offering and worthy of a taste test 3+/5
08 Feb 2011
For thirteen month’s I’ve compiled a list of my favorite things across the interwebs, twitterverse and bloggersphere. I’ve used these “Nectar Honors” posts as a way to archive the monthly happenings in my life and in the wine world (at least the wine world as I see it). While January was bar none the busiest month of my life, it has not gone by without its sacrifices. One, my personal life and two, routine blog posts seem to be the two main casualties dashed on the floor like spilled glasses of wine. The build-up, branding and marketing of the last year became a beautiful showcase of Washington wine and an example of how online marketing and building relationships through social media can pay huge dividends. While this post is still about the best of January 2011, I just wanted to share some highlights from our first month in business. I share this, not to pat myself on the back, but to show the amazing potential of an engaged group of followers and ambassadors.
- $20,000 in revenue with absolutely zero $ spent in marketing
- 130 Club Nectar memberships sold
- Steady web site traffic with a noticeable shift in search terms to “Nectar” or “Nectar Tasting Room”
- Media exposure through newspaper, local entertainment publication (The Inlander), Journal of Business and two features on KXLY TV
- Sold out social media class
- Requests for speaking engagements to present on social media and business
- Four new clients for social media consulting and management
My nine blog posts and six wines reviewed was the lowest total since this project began. Since opening the tasting room, I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying wine from the five participating wineries. People are always asking me my favorite wines. While I hate to play favorites, I can say that I bought a bottle of 2007 Northwest Cellars 100% Carmenere (now sold out).
Top Posts from Around the Web
Favorite Social Media and Marketing Posts
RickBakas begin_of_the_skype_highlighting end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlig Social Media ad Spending INFOGRAPHIC http://bit.ly/i4svym #sm #marketing
Wine Business Posts
Best Wine Expose
Posts that Made Me Spit Wine Out My Nose
Most Viewed Nectar Wine Blog Post
Nectar Opens to A Packed House – The Social Media Experiment http://drinknectar.com/2011/01/13/the-social-experiment-nectar-opens-to-a-packed-house/
01 Feb 2011
ValenWine weekend is quickly approaching. While many dread the Hallmark holiday of February 14, it is a dedicated day of the year for all the hopeless romantics to celebrate love…even if it’s just the hope of finding love some day. Tired of the same old flowers and a card, last minute Valentine’s gift? Get ready for something special, romantic and memorable.
The Spokane Winery Association has announced their first annual ValenWine Weekend. In the spirit of love, all 18 wineries of the Spokane Winery Association will host a special celebration of wine tasting with Valentine’s sweets. All 18 wineries will feature miniature heart cookies from the Rocket Bakery. Create some new memories Saturday and Sunday (February 12-13) from 11AM – 5PM; tasting fees may apply. (CLICK HERE to download a map).
Nectar Tasting Room is excited to be joining with the 18 SWA wineries to celebrate this special day. The tasting room will have five stations of chocolate and wine pairings from Pixie Dust Chocolates along with a custom ValenWine label and flowers from Just Roses Plus. A limited edition Nectar Romance Package includes flowers, chocolates and an amazing wine with a custom label (pictured below) where you can write your own romantic note to that special someone. Quantities are limited to 36 and are available for pre-order for just $49. Call 509.869.1572 to pre-order.
Wrap up your wine tasting with some soulful acoustic sounds from local musicians starting at 6pm on Friday and Saturday.
Break out of the routine and uninspired Valentine’s gifts and give the gift of ValenWine with Spokane Wineries and Nectar Tasting Room this year!