Check out following excerpt from Steve Heimoff’s blog column (03/16/2010) as it echos my comment perfectly. Also take time to read his entire article.
“What can wineries do to survive this avalanche or tsunami of bad economic times? Part of the answer is marketing. But you’d be amazed at how uninformed some wineries are when it comes to the simplest aspects of how to sell wine. A professional marketing consultant commented on this blog yesterday that “…it is troubling to me that so many [wineries] have no communications plan or comprehensive marketing strategy, yet they want to jump on Twitter or Facebook because it’s the latest thing…It is really shocking to me the number of wineries that make no effort to collect email addresses from tasting room visitors and, further, even those that do seldom use them! I was recently visiting a high end ($50-100/bottle) Sonoma County winery; purchased a couple of bottles, but no one even asked for an email address! Wouldn’t they like to sell me more wine?”
That’s the tip of the iceberg. If I was running a tasting room and somebody walked in and bought a couple bottles of $50-plus wine, I’d certainly ask them, at the very least, to give me their email! Then I’d send them periodic email newsletters, or find out if they want to sign up for my blog, or whatever. But to let them just walk out the door? Insane.”