Seven Ways to Maximize #WAWine
Events like WAMerlot and WAWine are awesome opportunities for wineries. They are events that bridge the virtual and reality. A participating winery that maximizes the event can connect with their existing client base, engage with new wine lovers online AND generate hundreds and even thousands of brand impressions in markets where they do business. This post is intended to be a support tool for you to maximize connection, engagement and hopefully sales.
#1 – Register
The first step is to register at the event site: http://wawine.eventbrite.com – This helps us to connect you to online participants who may want to purchase your wine when they join us through Twitter or Facebook. We also keep an updated list of wineries that are participating including their Twitter handle to make it easier for people to connect with you.
#2 – Invite
I’m an advocate for FREE forms of communication and invitation.
- At the very minimum you should send an invite to your email list or put the event in your regularly scheduled newsletter. The launch post is formatted like a press release. Copy and paste the info from there or you can actually download the press release.
- Create a Facebook invitation. For many, this is becoming the norm for how they manage their schedules. Doing this reinforces the message to people who are on your email list and engages people who are already adopters of technology. Make it easy for them to join by mentioning the Facebook Taste and Tweet page http://facebook.com/tasteandtweet
- Put the event on all event calendars in your area (winery association, web site, local event aggregators, etc).
- Tweet the event. Use twitter to point people to your Facebook invite or your web site calendar page so they can know specifics about how YOU are participating. Make sure to use the hashtag #WAWine in your tweets
#3 – Communicate
Be consistent in your efforts. Many people have an aversion to over communicating. While I’m not an advocate of spamming, you should know that social media is not like direct marketing, email marketing or mail marketing.
- Facebook and Twitter posts are chronological feeds that move quickly. What you say right now will only be seen by a % of your fans/followers. It’s okay to communicate the same message a few times throughout the day and at different times leading up to the event.
- Engage people who are coming into your tasting room. Use THIS FLYER to hand out to every customer who buys wine or wants to take one.
- Remind people one or two days prior to the event. Everyone is in the same boat – too much to do and too little time. People want to participate and they want to drink YOUR wine. You just need to remind them.
#4 Engage Wine Writers, Bloggers, and Trade
In late June the eyes of the online wine world will be on Washington State. The timing of WAWine is no accident. It is an intentional strategy to generate greater awareness of Washington wine among the online community. One of our approaches is to network with the Wine Bloggers Conference and encourage wineries to introduce themselves to these committed bloggers (some of whom are paying over $1000 in expenses to attend).
- Review this list of Wine Blogger Conference attendees and reach out to see if they would be interested in participating in WAWine and sampling your wine.
- Be discerning about who you choose. If you are being distributed into a new region, select someone from influence there. Select a blogger who has format you and your client base can relate to.
- Some wine bloggers will either be unable to participate due to schedules or they may have other tasting commitments.
- If you need some recommendations, email me email@example.com – I can tell you who the power tweeters are
#5 Make it Easy To Engage
Do people know you’re on Facebook and/or Twitter? Similar to your phone number and web site add these elements to your communication routines.
- Create a Follow us on Facebook and Twitter sign for your tasting room
- Create a contact us card (Phone, Email, Web site, Twitter, Facebook) that goes out the door with every customer
- Include Twitter and Facebook links to all of your email correspondence
- Tweet fun, relevant, informative content. Don’t always sell.
#6 Offer a Special
People will be coming to your tasting room now through the event. Whether or not they can join you in person, many will join in online. Offer them a special on a new release, a WAWine three pack, etc. Even if they can’t join in person or online, they can still drink WAwine on June 3! You can periodically Tweet or Facebook your special too, but remember to avoid over selling.
#7 Be Creative
Each of you brings something unique to the wine business. You may have a flare for art or music. Some of you have significant contacts in the traditional media world. Many of you are just looking for an excuse to throw a party. Make this your event. Take #WAWine and leverage the collective buzz and promotional efforts of 14 wine writers to your advantage.
- Contact media in your area
- Throw a huge party
- Invite a group to join you (women’s group, painting group, musicians)
- Put your own spin on WAwine and have fun!
As always, please contact myself, Sean Sullivan from WAWineReport.com or any of the other wine writers listed on the event page. They’re all on board to be a support or resource to help make this event a success.
Cheers and Drink Happy!