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Monday, November 5, 2018

Why People Don't Drink Wine

Americans preference of alcohol breaks down to something like a bit over 40% prefer beer, 20% spirits and about a third prefer wine (no, it doesn't add up to 100% -- numbers are approximate). For those 60+% that prefer something other than wine why do they pick a different beverage? The main reasons aren't taste or cost as I might have guessed. It's something that producers and marketing folks should pay attention to.

From a poll sponsored by an Australian marketing firm looking at Australians, Canadians and Americans they found all three countries had the same reasons for not choosing wine as their adult beverage of choice.
  • They don't know how to choose a wine. Yeah, it's pretty complicated.
  • They don't have friends that drink wine. Because they want to share? Or does it go back to the bullet above? That is, their friends also find it difficult to choose a wine off of a shelf.
What makes choosing a wine so difficult? All those different labels of all those different kinds of wine from all those different places. Many stores may have a couple dozen beers to choose from and a hundred wines. Many labels, especially imports, don't tell you want grape variety you're getting. Laws don't always allow it or producers don't want to do it, but if a wine label stated the items below if may be much easier for the average consumer to find the bottle they want:
  • The varieties of grapes used
  • Where the grapes are from as in country, state, region, appellation, then vineyard, as applicable.
  • In regards to certain wines, especially Riesling and Gewurztraminer, the level of sweetness.
Plus, all the fancy talk around wine doesn't help. The poetic adjectives used to describe a wine often leave me more confused. Then you're supposed to know the difference between Chardonnays that are oaked, unoaked, malolactic or not. Oh boy.

Another survey, put on by One Poll, looked at wine reviews. It found that over half of the people thought the descriptions from reviewers didn't help them in selecting a wine while nearly half said they were pompous. So there you go.

It's about knowing audience and it shouldn't be just the wine geeks. Keep it simple for the non-geeks among us because they could be new customers.

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