What Wine Country Can Teach Us About Content

I recently had the pleasure of attending the annual Multifamily Social Media Summit in beautiful Napa, California. The magnificent event takes place each January and is filled with speakers, panelists, and attendees who all speak (and sip) my language. Lucky for me, I had the opportunity to hang around Northern California for an extra two days in order to really take the atmosphere in.

While the entire conference was filled with great facts and figures, there were a few points that stuck out to me as a lover of vino and virality. With that being said, here are seven ways wine country also teaches us about content.

Plan ahead to avoid being overwhelmed

Before arriving to Napa, consider making a list of the wineries you plan to visit and create a route that makes the most sense based on your lodging and where you prefer to eat. Luckily, most wineries require reservations or deposits which will aid in these decisions and prevent scrambling or waiting in long lines.

Planning and scheduling content ahead of time also makes the most sense when managing multiple accounts as a social media manager. No SMM should ever post content off the cuff due to not having a course of action. Using a handy content calendar will make posting your future content (whether it is tomorrow, next week or a few months from now) as simple as possible.

Thankfully, TCP has a 2019 content calendar that can help organize your content for the rest of the year!

The early bird gets the worm

Once you have decided which wineries to visit, it is a good idea to arrive right when the winery opens if it is first come first served. This ensures that you are not wasting any time on top of also beating the inevitable crowds if you are visiting on a weekend or in peak season.

When it comes to creating content, users who take advantage of new features early on may be rewarded over those who are not using them.

According to Dylan Sellberg of Hubspot, there is always a product manager at these social networks who has to prove to her boss that users are enjoying a new feature. Savvy SMMs should keep up with advances on all platforms (more like Facebook and Instagram), and use the new features once they are live if it takes a lot of extra energy to use them (hello 3D photos and IGTV).

Provide an unforgettable experience

There are over 1000 wineries in Napa, Sonoma, and the surrounding area. As I drove down CA-29, I was amazed at the decisions that us visitors have to make before settling on just a few wineries for the day or full weekend. My friends and I planned ahead and decided on Sterling Vineyards for one of our stops as they have a gondola that visitors can ride up to the tasting area while looking at the amazing views of the valley below. Sterling could have simply had us walk into a street level tasting room and send us on our way, but we chose to visit due to this special feature.

A token from the aerial tram at Sterling Vineyards

A token from the aerial tram at Sterling Vineyards

When creating content for a brand, keynote speaker Andrew Davis reminded us marketers that we must “pledge to be different.” Due to the amount of noise on your target audience’s timeline, knowing how to break through it and provide an online or social experience is key. After all, Afif Khoury of Soci also let summit attendees know that “78% of consumer purchase decisions are influenced by social content,” so make your content worth the time and attention.

Ask relevant questions to learn about tastes

When tasting whites and reds at select wineries, visitors may have a guide who is able to explain each wine as well as its exclusivity and flavors.

However, there are some tours that are a bit more self-guided where visitors stop at stations and can ask questions about the selection. In this situation, feel free to ask if the wine is sweet or dry, if it is buttery or oaky, or if it is lively or robust. This will better determine the types of wine you like best, especially if you are planning to purchase a bottle at the end of the tour.

Asking your target audience questions about what they have a taste for is just as important. Consumers will not follow brands that create and curate content they are not a fan of. Take the time to poll your audience to see what they enjoy and then use analytics to back up your findings.

Always invest in quality

When taking time to taste wines from Pinot Grigio to Pinot Noir, it will be obvious that some wines have a different taste in quality than others. While each wine is delicious in its own way, you are more likely to remember the wines that are top notch. The same is true with your content.

Do not waste your time posting terrible content just you can post frequently and boost it. Ensure that your content focuses on your goals and always has a necessary call-to-action. Quality over quantity is always the way to go.

Check out this spread from Rams Gate Winery!

Check out this spread from Rams Gate Winery!

Sharing is caring (and cosigning)

One of my favorite parts of wine tasting is the cheese and charcuterie board with creamy and savory yummies. Getting a board (or two) to share with friends is always the perfect accompaniment to your wine selection.

Surprising enough, shares are the secret sauce when attempting to “beat” the Facebook algorithm because when a user takes a piece of content and shares it on their page, that person is basically cosigning it. Sellberg also informed conference attendees that posting videos that are longer than 30 seconds is the best way to get shares on the Facebook platform.

Don’t be so vain

When the average wine drinker shops for wine in the store without completing any research, he may pick a wine based on just the look of the bottle. I’ve been guilty of purchasing a bottle of wine because the label is bright, the font is elegant, and the shape is unique. But as we all know, that really doesn’t mean the wine is excellent.

This is also true with many of the numbers we see on social media. SMMs want the brands we manage to have the most likes and followers because it looks better to the untrained eye. However, the vanity metrics don’t necessary drive leads and sales. Begin keeping an eye on metrics that prove your target audience is paying attention and taking action such as comments, replies, and even website analytics such as content velocity and bounce rate.

What else can wine country teach us about social media and content? Let me know in the comments!