Sell Wine or Bust: Social Media Is A Winery’s Secret Weapon to Survival

Wine cellar

Computer Shopper published this deansguide article 9-11-09

Is there empirical proof that social media sells wine? If you take my experience, as an example, it does sell wine. If you are a Chief Marketing Officer, Wine Tasting Room manager, or anyone tasked with selling wine you may say no to social media. You may have created a Facebook page. You may have registered on Twitter. You may have even established a blog. Yet all of your efforts have fallen flat with a resounding thud! No uptick in sales, no mad rush to the tasting room, no phone lines burning off the hook. What happened? You forgot to do a lot of something-here are 6 reasons nothing has happened yet:

  1. Participation: you set up your Twitter, Facebook, blog, and LinkedIn presences thinking they would run themselves with minimal participation- wrong
  2. Plan: you showed up on each network without a plan to engage, a strategy, or a purpose
  3. Call to Action: you don’t ask your audience to do anything; your messages simply make statements without a compelling reason for audience participation with you
  4. Targeting: you utilize the “more the merrier” approach where you will shotgun your messages without targeting the audience that is most interested in your products and services
  5. Twitter: you are not utlizing Twitter as a source of sales leads and list building with consumers as well as businesses
  6. Facebook: you are not utilizing Facebook as your customer relationship management tool to build and maintain customer loyalty
  7. Measurement: you are not developing a system to track and analyze which messages are working to engage with customers, which messages are eliciting a call to action. Without this information, you can NOT continually tweak your strategy and messages to improve results
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Next Step Calls To Action: Ask For The Order Or Lose Your Business

PattonCourtesy George S. Patton Wiki

Business is a process of strategies that require next steps and calls to action. It is a process of moving forward. In the malady of economic conditions businesses face today, to not ask for the order or to not create a call to action for your consumers is the first step to complete collapse. Although social media is not about the hard sell in your face sales closing pitch; it does provide companies the space to ask for the order or create a call to action with the right tone and in due time.

If you do not ask your audience to take the next step, to do something you want them to do, or to invest in your company, your company will remain stagnant with little growth-and then fail.

7 Call to Action Examples

  1. Send me an invitation with a money saving incentive.
  2. Share links to valuable tips that I can use and associate with your products or services.
  3. Invite me to read spotlights or view photos of other customers experiencing your products or services.
  4. Make me aware of events associated with your products or services.
  5. Ask me for feedback on how you can make your product or service offerings more appealing.
  6. Invite me to share how your products or services are playing a role in my life.
  7. Educate me on how your products or services are helping others.

The bottom line: Message with purpose. Before you hit that magic “share” button, ask yourself if the message supports your business goals. Time is money.

The New Sales “Paradigm” In Real Estate: “The Hard Sell Is Dead”

The era of real estate hard sell tactics, cold calls, badgering email spam campaigns, and endless (Non-targeted) advertising is coming to a painfully slow end as many Realtors are beginning to painfully understand. The new paradigm shift and strategies, not tactics, are best described in Pat Kitano’s “The Hard Sell is Dead-Slideshow.”

The “Old Way”

1. Call to Action– Realtor attempts to force prospect to make decisions that require a definite action

2. Endless Ads- Always having an advertisement, usually the exact same ad, in as many places as possible

3. Spam– Everyone is a potential client actions of email spam, twitter spam, any unwanted unqualified sales pitch

4. Lead Generation– agents purchase unqualified leads then spam or cold call in attempts to “convert”

5. Unsubstantiated Claims– agents cold call and claim expertise without substantiating, proving, or providing evidence of such stature

The “New Way”

1. Blog share your knowledge continuously for free proving your knowledge and analysis of your market

2. Social Media- leverage your knowledge by providing “real time” commentary and analysis via social media networks

3. Clients- unknowingly clients follow your blog writing and social media commentary eventually RSS subscribing to your blog

4. Let Them Come to You- clients will contact you without you attempting to reach out to them first

5. Law of Attraction prospects are attracted to your writing, honesty, personality, and analysis. They will seek you out

Misguided Referral Strategies

1. Brokers– teach the “sphere of influence” friends and family plan of networking but that has limited scaleability

2. Spamming and Hunting– once you have gone through your friends, family, and sphere of influence where do you go for your next lead?

3. Bufini, By Referral Only, and Mike Ferry– they work in the old world but all three of these expensive coaching systems lack “one key component”: They have NO social networking strategy

Buffini Lead Gen Kit: 100 items of value; 50 custom personal notes; 100 Ch By The Way foil stickers; Dry erase board; tracking website setup assistance; Daily activity tracker; Laminated dialog poster

Keys To Understand

1. Online vs Offline Referrals– It’s easier to make an online referral if you write articles and commentary explaining your analysis and take on the market than it is to attempt to cold call an unqualified “prospect” who is not expecting your contact via email or phone

2. Social Media Key to Referral Strategy– Physical networks, like Rotaries or Chamber of Commerce, are moving onto social networks like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Plaxo

3. Information Free Eratransparency in business and free information blogs and site are changing our business environment. What has not changed is the fact that a real estate transaction is often complicated and Realtors are necessary within this transaction

4. Expert Interpretationleverage your writing platform (blog-freelance articles-newsletter-social commentary) and public speaking platform as methods to “make money selling your expertise”

5. Establish Your Online Expertise– your “network” of people considering hiring you and past clients follow your blog writing, your social commentary, and your bookmarks (digg etc.) which establishes your credentials as an expert in the online world