Elvis would have done wonders for wine, MWs told

Elvis News Wine News
  • Friday 14 July 2006

Wine marketers have missed a trick by failing to provide meaningful links between wine and music, the MW Symposium heard last month.

This was the message of Terry McBride, president and CEO of Nettwerk Records & Management, a music producer of artists including Dido, Avril Lavigne and Barenaked Ladies.

McBride suggested that ‘lifestyle products’ like wine and music have plenty in common, but the wine business was missing major marketing opportunities by its largely traditional approach to communicating with consumers.

Addressing delegates at the Institute of Masters of Wine Symposium in Napa, he noted that most people tended to associate wine with classical music and jazz.

‘That was all very well until the 1950s,’ he said, ‘but then along came Elvis and you lost it. That’s the moment when consumption of wine became generational.’

He told the audience: ‘You missed your first major branding opportunity.’

He pointed to his own company’s innovative use of the internet to reach niche markets by accessing social sites to build awareness of new bands from scratch.

He said there was little creative use of the internet by wine companies.

But even if the wine business has missed the branding opportunities of hip hop, acid house or garage, McBride thinks there is still hope, in the rise of the singer-songwriter.

Someone who creates a personal, hand-made product that from the heart seems to be a natural fit for wine. ‘Be smart,’ he urged. ‘Step outside your normal way of thinking about things.’

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