The rules of the game have changed, and like it or not, global overproduction has turned wine into another commodity product. Oversupply causes price cutting which, in turn, decreases overall industry profitability. And competition has never been so fierce. With over 200,000 wine brand names and 500,000 SKU’s on the shelves globally (Austrade 2004) the consumer has never had it so good whilst producers battle to survive.
According to Scott Bedburry author of “A New Brand World“, brands that respect the “higher” consumer needs and develop products and marketing communications that intelligently leverage them will rise above the commodity fray, for they will become more meaningful. These emotional needs include more powerful, more subtle, more complex motivations like yearning to belong, needing to feel connected, hoping to transcend, desiring to experience joy and fulfillment.
Here are five extracts from his book “A New Brand World” which should be food for thought for all wine marketers:
Relying on brand awareness has become marketing fool’s gold
“Almost every brand in existence today can be reduced to the status of a commodity if it fails to effectively evolve both its products and its marketing communications. You can’t do just one or the other. The most innovative product line will grow stale in the minds of potential customers if the marketing has become static, undifferentiated, or - even worse - irritating for lack of change”.
You have to know it before you can grow it
“Cracking your brand’s genetic code is not strictly about product, about the past, or even about things - it is about tapping in to an essence and an ethos that defines who you are to the folks who matter: your core customers, your potential customers, and your employees”.
Transcend a product-only relationship with your customers
“Effective brand building requires making relevant and compelling connections to deeply rooted human emotions or profound cultural forces. Brands that establish themselves within the larger incredibly complex fabric that we call life will set themselves apart in a more meaningful way. Great brands understand the need to respect both the physical and emotional needs of consumers”.
“The pressures of expanding into international markets are unavoidable once a company and its brand grow to a certain size. But the inner feel of a brand, its essence, its tone, its sensibility, is often grounded in a given culture or even region. The abiding challenge is to forge a global entity that respects what is unique about each country it operates in while also respecting the timeless values of the brand that define it”.
All brands need good parents
“Retailers and service companies are especially dependent on the front-line employees who come face-to-face with the customer. In companies like these, dedicated employees engender brand trust and foster brand loyalty better than any marketing program, whereas bad employees can easily undermine a brand that took years or even decades to build”.
By Mike Carter.