Youâ€™re traveling on business and a stranger asks, â€what do you do?â€ If you donâ€™t have a good answerâ€”the so-called â€œelevator pitchâ€â€”this post is for you.
For many wineries, our focus, the difficult part of the elevator pitch is not what to say, itâ€™s fitting it into 10-15 seconds. But the art of clear communication is simplicity. Many wineries err on the side of completeness because they donâ€™t want to leave things out. But a complex answer is difficult for the receiver to remember; a confused mind says â€œno.â€ And for many wineries who rely on direct-to-consumer sales â€“ that is, most wineriesâ€”theyâ€™ve just missed an opportunity to interest a prospective customer.
For some unknown reason â€“ an improving economy or perhaps a hyper competitive retail market — we have had a lot of requests lately for ourÂ Brand Consulting Service. Coming up with an elevator pitch is part of these client projects, and for winery brands, here are some tips:
- Anchor your winery in a wine region.
- Tell them one compelling point about your winery that doesnâ€™t necessarily have to do with the juice.
- Invite them to engage in your brand.
Letâ€™s break these down. First, most wine consumers naturally associate a winery with a geographic location. Sounds simplistic, but if youâ€™re located in the Willamette Valley, say so. But also add â€œOregonâ€ in case they donâ€™t know where that â€œValleyâ€ is. So, you might say, â€œI work for Winery ABC in Willamette Valley, Oregon.â€
Second, tell them one interesting fact. And please avoid winery clichÃ©s like â€œhandcraftedâ€ and â€œartisanal,â€ or throw-away words like â€œquality.â€Â You might say, for example, â€œWe were the first Oregon Pinot Noir served at the White House.â€ Or, maybe, â€œWe started our winery with a group of friends from college.â€ Something interesting to the listener, somethingÂ theyÂ can relate to. And never underestimate the power of the personal story; if you used to be a rocket scientist, thatâ€™s interesting.
Third, close the deal. Wine brings people together, so invite them to visit your winery, in person or online. â€œNext time youâ€™re in Portland, weâ€™re just a short drive from downtown.â€
Letâ€™s put it together: â€œI work for Winery ABC in Willamette Valley, Oregon. I started the winery with a group of friends from college and weâ€™re best known for Pinot Noir. Next time youâ€™re in Portland, come by for a visit.â€ Ok, maybe itâ€™s longer than 10 seconds, but you get the idea.
Simple, colloquial, but strategic and welcoming.