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Author Archive: Elizabeth Slater

A recognized expert in the fields of direct marketing and sales in the wine marketplace. Slater has taught more wineries and winery associations how to create and improve the effectiveness of their direct marketing programs and to make the most of each customer's potential than anyone in the wine industry today.

With the same humor and psychological insight she has used so effectively to understand the uniquely different challenges of wine businesses - large and small - Slater focused on co-creating WIN. Making it a direct marketing website that exemplifies everything she has discovered in more than 20 years in the wine industry and business-to-business marketing.

Quick-witted and original, Slater is a sought after speaker on winery sales, marketing, customer service, advertising and management topics. Wineries listen because she has the experience and creativity in the wine trenches to support her words.

After holding key marketing and sales management positions in national and international companies including the fast food, motorcycle, automotive, medical and computer industries, Slater turned her attention to wine in 1990 with the goal of starting her own wine marketing company. To learn the industry from the inside, she worked for two different wineries in four years. After developing and mastering the art of tasting room selling, she went on to handle all aspects of increasing their sales through direct marketing using the keen knowledge and insightfulness that she had used so successfully for other industries.

As the owner of the wine industry-consulting firm, In Short Direct Marketing, Slater has created marketing programs and events for the Russian River Wine Road including Winter Wineland and Wine & Food Affair. Under her direction, Passport to the Dry Creek Valley became one of the most popular, sought after and acclaimed events in the industry.

A born communicator, Slater teaches wine marketing courses at Santa Rosa Junior College and classes at Sonoma State, is the Vineyard & Winery Management marketing columnist, the program director of Tasting Room Profitability and a featured speaker at Wineries Unlimited. She lends her strategic planning expertise as a member of the Octagon Group in assisting different industries and businesses in rebuilding and improving their capabilities.

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Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving

As everyone is extra busy today, working hard and thinking about what has to be done to make this year’s Thanksgiving the best ever, I am going to keep things short today. Happy Thanksgiving…enjoy your day, eat a little too much and enjoy a good glass of wine or two with dinner.  Get to bed […]

Happy Holiday Selling

Happy Holiday Selling

Are you ready for holiday sales? It is only a week until Thanksgiving (where does the time go?) so Black Friday is almost upon us. After that December is looming. So far in my email inbox I have received a number of winery mailers offering me Thanksgiving wines though only one has even alluded to the December holidays. […]

Engaging Your Customers in Ways That Suit Them

Engaging Your Customers in Ways That Suit Them

I have been teaching a Wine Business class at my local Junior College in Sonoma County. This eight-week class, which has students ranging in age from 20 to 60 is about wine clubs. A couple of weeks ago we were talking about different ways of connecting with people and one of the ways was direct […]

What Makes Customers Happy?

What Makes Customers Happy?

There was an interesting article in a Marketing Profs email a month or so ago about customer service and what customer service issues annoy customers the most. I am sure that most of us can guess what they are, because they are the same ones that annoy us when we’re on the customer side of […]

No Longer Business as Usual

No Longer Business as Usual

I work with wineries throughout North America and have been amazed at the growth in the industry over the past decade or so. The growth is in all states and provinces and in some areas the number of wineries has quadrupled in fifteen years. This means that there is a lot more competition for consumer […]

Terrible Week (and It’s Only Just Started)

Terrible Week (and It’s Only Just Started)

Nature has a way shaking us up when we least expect it. Strong winds whipped up huge fires in Napa and Sonoma counties on Sunday night, which led to unthinkable devastation in the early hours of Monday morning and on through the day. Many people were evacuated (I was just outside the evacuation area), So many […]

How Well Are You Tracking Your Social Media?

How Well Are You Tracking Your Social Media?

While distributing information to your customers and potential customers through social media is important, it’s also important to know how the people that you are reaching are reacting to what you have to say. Are they paying attention to your posts or tweets and passing them along to others or do the posts just disappear. […]

Preparing for the Future

Preparing for the Future

A few weeks ago, Rob McMillan an EVP with Silicon Valley Bank and founder of their wine division wrote, as part of his blog about his prediction for the slowdown of growth in wine sales starting around mid 2018 and into 2019. He continues to say that while sales probably won’t decline, he expects zero […]

By September 27, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Easy Ways to Increase Sales

Easy Ways to Increase Sales

If you want to increase your sales quickly and simply, good customer service is your biggest asset. It will increase customer good will, willingness to buy and return visits. We talk a lot about sales skills, but if customer service is not the major part of sales, the sales skills are not going to help […]

By September 20, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Take the Time to Do Some Research

Take the Time to Do Some Research

One of the things I like most about the work I do is that it involves a fair amount of research on different topics. I use the information I find to create handouts at seminars and for my weekly blogs. While the Internet has certainly simplified research, it also means that there is much, much […]

By September 13, 2017 0 Comments Read More →
Tips for Keeping Your Brain in Top Form

Tips for Keeping Your Brain in Top Form

I have been catching up on my reading lately and have come across some great articles. Today’s blog is all about. “Why the Modern World Is Bad for Your Brain” which is an article by neuroscientist, Dr Gabija Toleikyte. In this day and age many of us are continually jumping from one task to another […]

Warmth, An Important Skill for Leaders

Warmth, An Important Skill for Leaders

I found a great article in the Guardian online with information from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University. The article is all about how showing warmth to co-workers, employees, etc. is an important part of being a boss. This article led me to another article by Jack Zenger and Joseph Folkman entitled “I’m The Boss! […]

Seeing Things Differently

Seeing Things Differently

Today was a red-letter day for me. As anyone who reads my blog knows I fractured my femur condyle on June 6th of this year (a day that will live in infamy). I have spent almost three months in a wheelchair without being able to put any weight on my left leg. I have to […]

Update Your Competitive Analysis

Update Your Competitive Analysis

We all know that part of a good business survival plan is a well-researched competitive analysis. Before you start a business, investigating your competition, their products, prices, marketing and public relations plans, customer service and more in paramount. For many businesses, once the original competitive analysis is completed the demands of creating and running a […]

How Effective Is Your Interaction with Customers?

How Effective Is Your Interaction with Customers?

Important points that many businesses fail to consider when they are sending out information to customers, whether that information is through social media, emails, text or even through the mail is: Will customers be interested in this? How much spare time do recipients have to focus on my interactions with them? Are they being overrun […]