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Targeting Your Audience
Terry Sullivan

Who is a wineries audience and what do they want? These are the questions that presenter, Danny Brager from Nielsen Research, searched through data to answer. Danny leads the Nielsen Beverage Alcohol Service team that deals with the wine, beer and spirits industries. Statistics can help wineries understand their potential audiences and market to those audiences.

The first statistics shared with the audience were promising for wine in general. In terms of “unit growth,” wine ranked first. In terms of “dollar growth,” wine ranked third. In order to get an understanding of the significance of these rankings compare them to beer and spirits. In the unit growth category, wine ranked 1st, spirits ranked 6th and beer ranked 32nd. In the dollar growth category, wine ranked 3rd, spirits ranked 15th and beer ranked 21st. Clearly, wine is in a strong position on these two scales.

Where are people buying their wine? The majority of people, 48%, purchase wine at wine shops, grocery stores and stores like Costco and BJs. Off premises sales account for 32% of a winery’s sales while on premise accounts for 19% of sales. Some small boutique wineries have 100% of their sales on premise, however this data reflects the country as a whole. Only 1% of sales are a result of direct shipping.

The recession has caused many wine purchasers to buy wine at a lower price point. However in the twelve-month period ending March 5, 2011, the data indicates that there is an increase in purchasing wines above a $10 price point and a reduction in purchasing wines under the $10 price point. Danny point out that during the recession many lowered the prices of wine. So the new trend is to begin purchasing higher than $10 wines that may be at a lower price than before the recession.

What do consumers purchase? The 3-liter box wines are showing the largest growth. Red wines are holding steady while white wine sales are increasing. Sales of blush wines are decreasing. As far as varietal wines are concerned, Pinot Noir sales are increasing at a double-digit rate. Riesling is also showing an increase in sales as well as New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Moscato’s growth rate is simply on fire showing a 103.9% increase. Domestic wines are leading imports in the United States. Of the imports, New Zealand wines and Argentina wines are showing the largest increases in sales. The drink local movement is now increasing in popularity. Eleven percent of the respondents in data collected indicated that they would buy locally produced wines.

Who is purchasing wine? Female wine purchasers once again lead male purchasers by a 54.4% to 45.5% margin. College graduates purchase 42% of wine sold. In terms of age groups, the 45 to 64 age group purchase 41.4% of the wine. The other three age groups are roughly equivalent. Seniors aged 65 and older purchase 19.7% of the wine sold, while millennials, 21 – 34, purchase 19.2% of wine sold. The group aged from 35 – 44 purchase 19.7% of wine.
A winery can use this data to determine where they want to target marketing efforts. The overall data seems to bode well for the wine industry that continues to show increasing sales.

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