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Expert Editorial

All Tiers Need to Listen Up!

All Tiers Need to Listen Up!

Every Wednesday in the local papers, usually in the Good Eating section or the Food section are an assortment of wine/beer/liquor ads. Sometimes they are really pretty and well designed. Sometimes they are a grocery list of brands and pricing. I have been involved in the adult beverage business for nearly 40 years and that […]

Change Is in the Wine from the Wine and Spirit Daily Summit

Change Is in the Wine from the Wine and Spirit Daily Summit

There was an overarching sense of “tiger by the tail” mentality about millennials, RTD drinks, craft everything, and distributor consolidation. There were some musings about DTC shipping, Amazon, the next Fireball and Yellow Tail, cans over bottle and of course, wine in a box. I left the summit with a sense of we all know […]

The Myth of the Producer Ride Along

The Myth of the Producer Ride Along

It is a right of passage in the adult beverage business. A producer comes to a market and rides around with the sales team or market manager and visits accounts. As old as the three-tier system is this practice. There are really two points of view on this practice; besides the overarching thought that it […]

It Is All in the Wrapping!

It Is All in the Wrapping!

I was fortunate enough to have been asked to judge packaging for brands at Tastings.com/ Beverage Testing Institute last week. What a wonderful experience to be able to see so many aspiring brands submit their outer shell for review, ratings and comments. My one major takeaway was, as my 12 year old would say: WTF! […]

Tasting Room Trends: 2016 Review & 2017 Forecasts

Tasting Room Trends: 2016 Review & 2017 Forecasts

At VingDirect, we exist to help family wineries grow their direct to consumer sales. Our winery clients receive education and training, customized consulting, and our Performance Tracker (PT) software, which provides actionable tasting room data. Ours is the only benchmarking tool in the wine industry and we’re happy to share 2016 learnings and insight to what we think […]

3 Adult Beverage Trends to Expect in 2017

3 Adult Beverage Trends to Expect in 2017

I am not a betting man. In fact, when I do bet, I usually lose. I am horrific in betting sports, elections, random things, and I am equally bad at Rock, Paper, and Scissors that is essentially a bet on a chance pull. But, for nearly 5 years I have written a trends article and […]

Data Is Driving the Wine Industry

Data Is Driving the Wine Industry

There’s no shortage of mobile apps these days to find wines, remember what you drank, or even have wine delivered to your door in under an hour. But with so many apps and new technologies, it can be difficult for producers and suppliers to determine how the changing landscape of technology in the wine industry […]

Managing Managers – It’s a Whole New Ballgame!

Managing Managers – It’s a Whole New Ballgame!

By Joel A. Miller, ChateauHR Consulting Roles change dramatically when you get promoted to middle management. Many newly-promoted managers fall flat on their face because no one told them this simple truth – you need a different leadership style to succeed at higher levels. The skills that got you promoted ARE NOT the skills you’ll […]

Distributor Consolidation

Distributor Consolidation

2016 will go down as the year of mass distributor consolidation. It does not matter what part of America you live, sell, or merchandise in; you are seeing consolidation at a rampant pace. It used to be Southern and everybody else, now it is Southern, Breakthru and others clambering for the same “shrinking” pie. Did […]

Five Video Tips for Wine Marketing

Five Video Tips for Wine Marketing

I live and work producing films and videos in the San Francisco Bay area, where tech and startups abound, but creativity doesn’t necessarily follow suit. A great deal of time is spent looking just like the competition on company websites and social media portals, so the new guy can appear to be on equal footing with the slightly older gal, and mind blowing company videos consist of a bunch of words jumping onto a white screen and/or hand drawn animation that isn’t.

10 Factors to Consider when Selecting a Bulk Wine Supply Partner

10 Factors to Consider when Selecting a Bulk Wine Supply Partner

IBWSS (International Bulk Wine and Spirits Show) talks to Steve Dorfman, partner at the Ciatti Company about the 10 Factors That One Should Consider when Selecting a Bulk Wine Supply Partner. Steve joined the Ciatti Company in 2007 after working with the Brown-Forman Corporation, Fetzer Vineyards, Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards and Bolla Wine brands for 24 years. […]

Ready for Your Exit? Start Your Succession Planning with a Few Simple Questions

Ready for Your Exit? Start Your Succession Planning with a Few Simple Questions

by Jay Silverstein, Partner, Moss Adams LLP Succession planning continues to be a buzzword as baby boomers transition their businesses and wealth to the next generation. These questions can help you determine your exit readiness and jump-start your planning. I’m undecided about selling my winery or vineyard versus transitioning it to family members. How much […]

5 Cannot Miss Tricks to Help 2016 Finish Strong

5 Cannot Miss Tricks to Help 2016 Finish Strong

Retailers and Distributors, we are here, we are at the end of 2016. November and December is about to get rolling and it is time to be proactive. There are 8 weeks left in 2016 and here are 5 cannot miss tricks to increase your depletions and your retail sales. I look at sales as […]

Wines Millennials Want: Five Stand-Out Qualities Millennials Are Looking For

Wines Millennials Want: Five Stand-Out Qualities Millennials Are Looking For

If you want a sense of the enormous influence of millennials, just take a look at the stats. Millennials, the largest generation in America, are expected to spend 200 billion dollars in 2017. They account for 11.6 million households with kids, and they are the most ethnically and racially diverse American generation. Add some context to those numbers — more wine, beer, and spirits options exist now than ever before — and you come up with a positive yet daunting outlook. Millennials are eager to spend their money on wine brands they believe in, but they’re also our most spontaneous and engaged generation.

“What Kind of Tree would You Be?” and Other Stupid Interview Questions

“What Kind of Tree would You Be?” and Other Stupid Interview Questions

By Joel A. Miller, ChateauHR Consulting I’m amazed by the number of mediocre interviews in our industry.  Many use silly questions to gauge the candidate’s intellect or creativity.  Some classics:  “If you could be any superhero, who would you be?” “If you were stuck on a deserted island, what would you bring with you?” Hiring […]